Italian documentary wins Venice’s Golden Lion

Italian movie Sacro Gra has become the first-ever documentary to win the coveted Golden Lion prize at the Venice Film Festival after seeing off competition from a number of Hollywood offerings. The event’s top trophy was handed out on Saturday (07Sep13) and Sacro GRA’s win also marked the first time an Italian project has won the prize in 15 years.
The documentary, by filmmaker Gianfranco Rosi, beat out a number of notable entries, including Stephen Frears’ Philomena, starring Dame Judi Dench, which took the Best Screenplay award for writer Steve Coogan.
Scarlett Johansson’s Under The Skin, Terry Gilliam’s The Zero Theorem starring Christoph Waltz and Matt Damon, Zac Efron’s Parkland and Nicolas Cage film Joe all failed to win any prizes in the competition.
The Silver Lion trophy for best director went to Greek moviemaker Alexandros Avranas for his drama Miss Violence, while the film’s star, Themis Panou, was named best actor.
The Jury Grand Prize went to retiring Chinese director Tsai Ming-Liang’s Stray Dogs and the Special Jury Prize was awarded to Philip Groning’s The Police Officer’s Wife.