Indian film 'The Disciple' wins FIPRESCI award at Venice film fest

Brenda Watkins
September 14, 2020

Zhao, a China-born director living in the United States, and two-time Oscar-winning actress Francis McDormand, the film's star, accepted Venice's Golden Lion award via video hookup since the coronavirus travel restrictions prevented them from attending the award ceremony in person.

"After becoming the first Indian film in almost two decades to compete at the Venice Film Festival 2020's main competition, ' The Disciple', written and directed by Chaitanya Tamhane and produced by Vivek Gomber (who also featured in Chaitanya's first feature, ' Court'), has won the International Critics" Prize awarded by FIPRESCI at the 77th Venice International Film Festival.

Venice hosted the first worldwide film festival since the COVID-19 lockdown, and it was a success, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

"The way is uncertain, but tonight is a beginning", she said.

Veteran Russian director Andrei Konchalovsky was also awarded a special jury prize for Dear Comrades!, a film about the 1962 massacre of striking workers in Novocherkassk which had been tipped as a front runner for the top prize.

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Head of Marketing of Disney Italy, Davide Romani receives the Golden Lion award on behalf of director Chloe Zhao for Best Film "Nomadland" in Venice, Italy, Sept 12, 2020.

The annual gathering in the Italian city is one of the "big three" film festivals, alongside Cannes and Berlin.

Britain's Vanessa Kirby, best known for the Netflix series "The Crown" won best actress for her performance in "Pieces of a Woman" by Kornel Mundruczo about a home birth that goes wrong.

Its Chinese-born director Chloe Zhao picked up the coveted award 10 years after Sofia Coppola's 2010 win for her film "Somewhere", in a year in which almost half of the films in the main competition were directed by women.

Brad Pitt, Meryl Streep and Scarlett Johansson were among those to have supplied the celebrity panache at last year's festival.

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