Al Pacino is the recipient of the Jaeger-Le Coultre Glory to the Filmmaker 2011 Award, a prize of the Venice International Film Festival dedicated to an artist who has left an original mark on contemporary cinema. The prize has previously been awarded to some of the greatest figures in film including: Takeshi Kitano (2007), Abbas Kiarostami (2008), Agnès Varda (2008), Sylvester Stallone (2009) and Mani Ratnam (2010).
The awards ceremony took place on Sunday September 4th during the 68th Venice International Film Festival. Festival Director Marco Mueller described Pacino as “An amazing director, whose experience is precious and original, and enriches the world of contemporary film.” The award ceremony preceded the world premiere of Pacino’s third feature-length directorial picture, Wilde Salome. Referred to as his “most personal project ever,” the unconventional feature documentary invites audiences into Pacino’s private world, as he explores the complexities of Oscar Wilde’s acclaimed play Salome, Wilde himself, and the birth of a rising star in actress Jessica Chastain.
“There is nowhere else I would rather debut Wilde Salome than at Venice, because of its rich artistic history. Wilde Salome is an exploration into the world of Oscar Wilde the artist and in Salome, the emancipation of a work that lives on” said Pacino.
Wilde Salome will be released this fall and stars Al Pacino (Herod), Jessica Chastain (Salomé), and Kevin Anderson (John the Baptist), and is produced by Barry Navidi and Robert Fox, with Salome Productions.
The director of the festival Marco Mueller invited Jessica Chastain on stage to present the prize to Al Pacino. It was with deep emotion that the actress (a talent discovered by Al Pacino) expressed how honored she was to give the prize to Al Pacino and underlined Jaeger-LeCoultre’s involvement in the world of cinema: “I am proud to present this award to Mr. Pacino on behalf of Jaeger-LeCoultre. Jaeger-LeCoultre’s commitment to film is sincere, longstanding and ever increasing with their support of not only the Venice Film Festival but Shanghai as well, working to help recognize both upcoming and confirmed actors, directors and producers. They are delighted to honor Mr Pacino’s outstanding contribution to the world of film and to help him celebrate Wild Salome by presenting him with an engraved watch, symbolizing the time dedicated to making art.”
Director/actor Al Pacino at the Wild Salome press conference during the 68th Venice Film Festival at Palazzo del Cinema on September 4, 2011.