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Kristen Stewart's Diana film 'Spencer' competing for top prize at Venice film fest

Web Desk
July 27, 2021
Spencer centers on a weekend in the early 1990s when Diana decided to separate from Prince Charles
Spencer centers on a weekend in the early 1990s when Diana decided to separate from Prince Charles

MILAN: Jane Campion’s The Power of the Dog, Pedro Almodovar’s Parallel Mothers and Kristen Stewart’s turn as Princess Diana in Spencer are among the titles vying for the top prize at this year’s Venice film festival, which runs Sept. 1-11.

The world’s oldest film festival, regarded as a showcase for Oscar contenders as awards season approaches, hopes to welcome back Hollywood celebrities this year after a scaled-down 2020 edition.

New Zealand filmmaker Campion, known for The Piano, will present her drama starring Benedict Cumberbatch as a sadistic ranch owner who launches a campaign against a young widow, interpreted by Kirsten Dunst, in 1920s Montana.

A Netflix production, The Power of The Dog had been invited to screen out of competition at the Cannes festival but opted instead for Venice, which unlike its French rival does not demand a theatrical release for films vying for the top prize.

Spain’s Almodovar reunites with one his favorite actresses, Penelope Cruz, in Parallel Mothers, while Spencer, by Chilean director Pablo Larrain, film centers on a weekend in the early 1990s when Diana decided to separate from Prince Charles.

They are among 21 films in the main competition, which include Maggie Gyllenhaal’s directorial debut The Lost Daughter, based on an Elena Ferrante novel, and the The Hand of God by Paolo Sorrentino – one of five Italian titles seeking to scoop up the Golden Lion top award. - Reuters