The Venice Film Festival will honor “The Night Porter” director Liliana Cavani and Tony Leung Chiu-wai, the Hong Kong star of “In the Mood for Love” and Marvel’s “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings,” with its 2023 Golden Lions for Lifetime Achievement.
Cavani first attended Venice in 1965 with the historical doc “Philippe Pétain: Processo a Vichy,” which won the Lion of San Marco for best documentary. She was back the Lido in 1966 with her TV movie “Saint Francis of Assisi,” and, again, in 1968, with “Galileo,” followed by Patricia Highsmith adaptation “Ripley’s Game,” starring John Malkovich, in 2002 and “Clarisse,” a doc about an order of cloistered nuns in 2012.
“I am very happy and grateful to the Biennale di Venezia for this wonderful surprise,” Cavani, who is 90, said in a statement.
Venice artistic director Alberto Barbera praised Cavani as “One of the most emblematic protagonists of the New Italian Cinema of the 1960s, whose work has spanned over sixty years of show business history.” He called her “a versatile artist who frequents television, theater, and opera with the same unconventional spirit and intellectual ferment that have made her movies famous.”
Leung has starred in three movies that have won the Venice Golden Lion: “A City of Sadness” (1989) by Hou Hsiao-hsien; “Cyclo” (1995) by Tran Anh Hung, and “Lust, Caution” (2007) by Ang Lee. In accepting the honor, he stated: “I am overwhelmed and honored with the news from the Biennale di Venezia. I hope to celebrate this award with all the filmmakers I have worked with. This award is a tribute to all of them as well.”
Barbera praised Leung as “a charismatic performer” with a remarkable transnational career. “Not only have Tony Leung’s roles spanned a great variety of genres, but they also have bridged television, popular culture and art-cinema at different latitudes,” Barbera noted.
The Venice Film Festival’s 80th edition will run Aug. 30-Sept. 9.