DDW is getting ready for the 2022 Venice Film Festival with details on the line-up, the unexpected Oscars collaboration, and details on how you can attend this year’s festival.
Summer is heating up in Italy as the Venice Film Festival gears up for its 2022 edition. In its 79th year, the cinematic arm of the Venice Biennale has proven itself more ambitious than ever as an unprecedented 23 films from over ten countries are listed to compete for the most prestigious awards of the Venice Film Festival.
Venice has grown from strength to strength over the past decade, while the previously insurmountable Cannes Film Festival has been slowly losing its spark. This year, the Italian film industry hopes to end the summer on a high, with the festival opening on August 31st and closing with the award ceremony on September 10th.
Hotly anticipated returns for the 2022 Venice Film Festival come from American filmmakers Noah Baumbach and Darren Aronofsky. White Noise and The Whale will have their worldwide premieres at the festival, as both directors chose Venice over Cannes again. Baumbach’s White Noise will be taking the 2022 Venice Film Festival’s prestigious opening slot, marking the beginning of the global fanfare as the film moves to another opening slot at the New York Film Festival.
The decision to open White Noise in Venice shows Baumbach’s loyalty to Netflix (his distributor-cum-patron). While Cannes has routinely shunned streaming platforms from the competition, Venice has vowed to move with the times and accommodate what they view as equally reputable avenues of filmmaking.
Such a commitment has secured the Italian film festival a series of high-profile premieres, including Baumach’s 2019 Oscar-winning A Marriage Story and Alfonso Cuarón’s Golden-Lion-winning and Oscar-winning Roma – both of which Netflix distributed.
As well as notoriety and exclusivity, Venice has succeeded where other European festivals have failed by cultivating a particularly close and beneficial relationship with Hollywood’s Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences (AMPAS). For the first time, the famously American-centric organisation will be sending its newly plugged CEO Bill Kramer to attend the 2022 Venice Film Festival.
Kramer, alongside other senior AMPAS leaders, will meet with international industry professionals, engage in panel discussions, and host the first-ever Oscars and Venice Film Festival collaborative event. “It is an important sign for the Italian movie industry and the entire international film community that the AMPAS has chosen Venice to introduce its new CEO to the world,” writes Alberto Barbera – the decade-long artistic director of Venice Film Festival credited with revolutionising Europe’s relationship with Hollywood.
“It confirms the intention of the AMPAS to open up, more and more, to international partners, but it is also the significant recognification of the Venice International Film Festival in the promotion and enhancement of the best films in general, and of American ones in particular.” Oscar-winners – from Black Swan to La La Land and A Star Is Born to The Favourite – have all premiered at the Italian destination, making Venice Film Festival the discerning choice for the filmmaker, cultural critic, and artist alike.
Those searching for the final drops of Summer will also adore the festival’s home on the Venetian island of Lido. At only 11 kilometres long, the island offers an intimate environment for the community to experience and socialise. The vast art deco Palazzo del Cinema has played host to festival screenings since the 1930s and is a must-see for any visitor.
If a last-minute cultural break is on your mind, accreditation passes are needed for entry to the festival. Each pass is issued at the sole discretion of La Biennale di Venezia. However, late applications for accreditation are still open, and the Venice Film Festival accreditation process offers opportunities for a vast range of audiences to attend screenings.
Accreditation is available for press and cultural sector workers, industry professionals such as actors, filmmakers, costume makers and cinematographers, and lecturers and educators specialising in film. You are also eligible to apply if you are under 26, over 60, or enrolled in any University course at any stage of your studies.
As expected, select events at the Venice Film Festival will be invitation only, such as the opening and closing nights, while some screenings are intended only for the press. The vast majority of screenings, however, are “Tutti gli accrediti” or “All Pass Holders”. The festival may be notably exclusive and careful in its vetting process, but once you have a pass you are part of the event.
The key is to apply for only one accreditation and strictly follow the stipulations in each category. Getting your application in sooner also allows time to avail of service luxuries such as fast-track. Once you receive your official accreditation badge, you can use the bespoke online booking system to choose your screenings on a first-come-first-served basis.
Once in the 2022 Venice Film Festival, expected highlights include the renaissance performance of Brendan Fraser in The Whale. Fraser plays a troubled father weighing 600-pounds as he reconnects with his teenage daughter in a move aimed at the Volpi Cup. The prominence of the political plight and genius of Iranian filmmaker Jafar Panahi will be apparent with No Bears – a parallel exploration of art, love, and dire consequences.
For Panahi, who will not be able to attend the Venice Film Festival this year due to his recent six-year prison sentence, No Bears exemplifies the neverending art-life cycle of imitation. The film will hit close to home for those aware of Panahi’s internment following his visit to detained film directors who had questioned the Iranian regime. For critic Scott Roxborough, Venice Film Festival is “sending a clear political message to Tehran, which has received international condemnation for a recent crackdown on local filmmakers”.
The Venice competition selection includes four Iranian films in competition. Out-of-competition highlights include the high-profile and socially controversial Don’t Worry Darling starring Florence Pugh and Harry Styles, while the Orizzonti awards are set to provide more auteur-focused viewers with visually expressive avant-garde filmmaking.
Venice may be the oldest film festival in the world, but it is quickly becoming an unmissable social event and the most important European film festival on the calendar. In its 79th year, the 2022 edition of the festival guarantees to cement its international status as an industry leader.
A trip to Lido on August 31st may feel like an otherworldly and immersive experience in global cinematic culture, yet the 2022 Venice Film Festival is guaranteed to have unexpected winners and losers that will affect the fashion, campaigns and voting tactics for the rest of this year’s awards season.