The Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement of the 79th Venice International Film Festival (August 31 – September 10, 2022) has been awarded to the American director (The Card Counter, First Reformed, Cat People, American Gigolo) and screenwriter (Raging Bull, Taxi Driver, Obsession, The Yakuza) Paul Schrader.
The decision was made by the board of the Biennale di Venezia, which embraced the proposal of the Festival’s Director, Alberto Barbera.
Paul Schrader, in accepting, stated, “I am deeply honored. Venice is the Lion of my heart.”
Regarding this award, Director Alberto Barbera declared, “Paul Schrader is a key figure of New Hollywood who, from the late 1960s on, has revolutionized the imagination, aesthetics, and language of American film. It is not an exaggeration to affirm that he is one of the most important American filmmakers of his generation, a director who is deeply influenced by European film and culture, and a stubbornly independent screenwriter who nonetheless knows how to work on commission and confidently move within the Hollywood system. The daring visual stylization that informs all his movies puts him among the most up-to-date exponents of a type of cinema that is unreconciled and subtly investigates contemporaneity. Schrader measures himself against this contemporaneity not only with tireless intellectual and compassionate curiosity, but also with a surprising ability to navigate film’s technological evolution, as well as its production and distribution systems. Thanks to this daredevilry (which not many filmmakers of his caliber are willing to attempt, in the mature phase of their careers), Schrader not only continues to work but in recent years he has also given us some of his most beautiful films.”
The President of the Biennale di Venezia. Roberto Cicutto, added: “The 79th Venice International Film Festival of La Biennale di Venezia brings with it a very important anniversary. It was 1932 when the first edition of the oldest film festival in the world was held on the terrace of the Hotel Excelsior. So this year the Venice Film Festival celebrates its 90th anniversary. Events in history stole eleven of them if we count the number of editions that took place. But this anniversary is yet another gift that the Venice Film Festival offers to the Golden Lion Paul Schrader, the multifaceted film auteur. “