"Nomadland" is the first work by a female director to win the Golden Lion in a decade

The American film "Nomadland" was crowned with the Golden Lion award at the Venice Festival, especially thanks to the remarkable performance of the two Oscar-winning actress Frances McDormand, at the end of the most important film event this year since the quarantine measures due to the epidemic Covid-19.

The American director of Chinese descent, Chloe Gao, 38, became the first woman to receive this prestigious cinematic award ten years ago when her compatriot Sophia Coppola won it in 2010 for her movie "Samwer".

This award places the director, who was known in 2017 with "The Rider" and is currently preparing for a "Marvel" movie expected to be released next year, in a good position within the Oscars race, as evidenced by several examples from past years for works that won the Oscar a few months after Earning the Golden Lion in Venice, among them was Todd Phillips' "Joker" last year.

By honoring the movie "Nomadland", the festival committee headed by Australian actress Cate Blanchett chose to reward one of the few American productions participating in this year's session of the Venice Festival that is being held in an exceptional setting due to the Covid-19 epidemic.

Director Chloe Gao commented on her award in a video message that she filmed inside a bus in Pasadena, California, indicating the continuing consequences of the global health crisis that prevented many film crews from traveling to Venice.

The cinematographer said, "Thank you very much," while actress Frances McDormand, who was sitting next to her, said, "Thank you very much for this golden lion. Thank you for welcoming us at your festival in this very strange world. We will meet again."

McDormand plays a battered woman who leaves everything to live a nomadic life in a trailer on the fringes of American society.

The film immerses itself in the world of "trailer dwellers," the Americans who spend their time in reclaimed vehicles that include a sleeping space and live simple jobs. They even form a kind of small community and communicate with each other during chance encounters on the roads or via social media.

The committee, which includes a constellation of filmmakers and stars, including the American actor Matt Dillon, also rewarded the Mexican film "Nuevo Ordin" by Michel Franco (the Grand Jury Prize), and awarded the Silver Lion Award in the category of best director for Japanese Kiyoshi Corasawa for "Wave of a Spy".

As for the performance awards, British Vanessa Kirby, who is especially known for her role as Princess Margaret in the series "The Crown", won the Best Actress award for her starring role in "Pieces of a Woman" by Hungarian Cornell Mondrocho. The 32-year-old actress is participating in another act in the festival’s competing films, "The World to Cam" by Mona Fastfold.

The Italian actor Pierfrancesco Favino also won an award for his participation in Claudio Nocchi's "Badrenostro" as a high-ranking Italian government employee who is attacked during the political turmoil known as the "Years of Lead".

The holding of this year's session, which was the subject of great interest in cinema circles as the first major cinematic forum since the start of the quarantine measures, is an achievement in itself, according to the organizers.

The festival was held amid tight control over the participants, including obliging them to wear a mask, take their body temperature, and impose spacing between them.

The organizers indicated that no focus of the new Corona virus was recorded during the event, which allowed it to continue until the end.

This is a glimmer of hope for the cinema sector, which suffered heavy losses due to the crisis, and for workers in the sector and fans of the seventh art who have been flooded with films via streaming services in recent months during the quarantine period.


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