On the endorsement of Venice Film Festival’s director, Alberto Barbera, the Biennale di Venezi board of directors, chaired by Paolo Baratta, has selected the British filmmaker Sam Mendes (‘Spectre,’ ‘Road to Perdition’) to preside over the 73rd Festival’s jury.
Mendes will oversee the committee when they decide on which film to award the Golden Lion for best film, as well as other awards at the festival.
“His productions, whether destined for stage or screen, are able to reconcile the expectations of the most exacting critics with the tastes of a vast audience, which seems to transcend all geographical and cultural boundaries,” Barbera said of the selection.
Making his debut as a theatrical director in the late 80’s and winning many awards for his work, Sam Mendes established himself in cinema with ‘American Beauty’ in 2000. The film took home five Oscars, which included a best director award.
Well know for his collaboration with some of the greatest minds in film, cinematographer Roger Deakins, writer Alan Ball, and even the late great Connie Hall. Mendes will make a great fit to head the world’s oldest film festival.
“I’m very honored to have been asked by Alberto to lead the International Jury for Venezia 73,” said Mendes of the announcement. “I’ve always had a strong personal connection with Venice; as a student I worked for three months at the Peggy Guggenheim Collection way back in 1984, and my happiest film festival memory is launching ‘Road To Perdition’ at Venice in 2002. I am thoroughly delighted to be coming back to the Lido this year and welcoming a wealth of international filmmaking talent.”
Sam Mendes next project is called ‘The Voyer’s Hotel,’ based on a soon to be book by Gay Talese. The story is about a man in Colorado who opens a motel to spy on guests. DreamWorks and Steven Spielberg are attached to produce.
The Venice International Film Festival will take place August 31st-September 10th.