Battling Hollywood big-names such as George Clooney and European classics like “Wuthering Heights” for the prestigious Golden Lion will be three Asian entries including an adaptation of manga classic “Himizu” by celebrated Japanese director Sion Sono.
Adapted from Minoru Furuya’s dark psychological manga “Himizu”, the story is about a troubled junior high school boy whose life descended into darkness after being abandoned by his parents.
The film is directed by cult favorite director Sion Sono, who had previously dabbled in directing films of the same genre including 2001 thriller “Suicide Circle” and the 2008 “Love Exposure” which won the Caligari Film Award at the Berlin International Film Festival.
Twenty-two films, all world premieres will compete for the Golden Lion award with screenings at the glittering Venice Film festival which opens with “The Ides of March”, George Clooney’s fourth film as director, that’s expected to draw actors Ryan Gosling, Philip Seymour Hoffman and Evan Rachel Wood.
Apart from the Japanese entry, the other Asian films being screened for the prestigious awards include China/Hong Kong film “A Simple Life” starring Hong Kong actor and actress Andy Lau and Deanie Ip, and China-Taiwan film “Seediq Bale”.
“A Simple Life” directed by Ann Hui, three-time winner of Best Director for the Hong Kong Film Awards, “A Simple Life”, is based on a true story, illustrates the touching relationship between a man and a servant who worked in his family for five generations and took care of him since he was born.
China-Taiwan film “Seediq Bale” which is based on true events of the Wushe Incident in the 1930s depicts the anti-Japanese struggles of the Seediq warriors from Formosa (now Taiwan).
By Wei Te-Sheng, director of 2008 film “Cape No. 7”– the second highest grossing film in Taiwan, the film is split into two 90-minute installments to be released in Taiwan in September.
The decorated cast includes Japanese actor Ando Masanobu, Taiwan singers Landy Wen and Vivian Hsu.
All eyes however, are on the red carpet and the expected appearance of Hollywood heart-throb George Clooney whose movie “Goodnight and Good Luck” won best screenplay and best actor awards in Venice in 2005.
Madonna and Al Pacino will also grace the red carpet at this year’s Venice film festival although their movies are not in the competition.
The Venice Film festival which is the oldest in the world runs from August 31 to September 10 and the official line-up for the 68th edition of the top prize will include a “surprise” film to be revealed closer to the time.
Poster of the movie “Seediq Bale”