Venice Film Festival – The Oldest Film Festival in the World


The Venice International Film Festival was founded in 1932 in Venice, Italy, making it the oldest film festival in the world. The film festival was founded by Count Giuseppe Volpi di Misurata and it was initially held on the terrace of the Hotel Excelsior in Venice. Very few countries participated in the festival in the 1940’s, because of World War II. In the 1950’s, more countries started to participate and the Venice Film Festival expanding internationally. New films from Japan and India began to screen at the film festival.

In its early days, with new genres of film, the Venice Film Festival began to make its mark in the world. This film festival helped directors early in their careers.

The Festival

The Venice Film Festival is held every September. The film festival accepts films from all over the world. Films are chosen by a group of jurors, who range from Quentin Tarantino and many other individuals in the film industry. The Venice Film Festival accepts short films, as well as feature films. The festival spans eleven days, which are filled with various film events and activities.


The Venice Film Festival distributes several awards during the 11-day run. The Gold Lion is the highest award given, which is the festival principle award for best film. The Silver Lion is the second runner’s up to the Gold Lion award. The Silver Lion is the second highest film award at the festival. Along with the Lion awards, the jury awards a film the Special Jury Prize every year. The jury at the Venice Film Festival chooses films for the Special Jury Prize based on a variety of factors.

The Volpi Cup is an award that is given out to actors with the best performance. The Venice Film Festival also distributes the Golden Osellas award to directors, screenwriters and other individuals in the film industry.

Entry Fees

The entry fees for the Venice Film Festival vary every year. Updated information on entry fees are displayed on the film festival’s website, a few months before the actual event. When filmmakers are submitting their films to the Venice Film Festival, an entry form must be filled out and included with each submission. The Venice Film Festival showcases short films and feature length films, which range from work from emerging directors and blockbusters from the most experienced filmmaker.

Entry into the Venice Film Festival is a coveted position and the selection committee screens every film, looking for the best and most unique.

Link to the Academy Awards

The Venice Film Festival has screened films that have been Oscar contenders. Many high profile films have screened at the film festival before they were nominated for Academy Awards, in several categories. The Venice Film Festival brings out high profile actors, who are there to promote their film. The festival has also showcased emerging cinema from all over the world, places such as Europe, Asia and Africa.