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My favorite thing about the Venice Film Festival …
It takes place in Venice. The place is just astonishing. You get to see great films, but you can still escape and see an art exhibition.
My ‘only in Venice’ moment was …
My biggest Venice moments have come when I wasn’t in Venice. We’ve had two films that won the Golden Lion — Alexander Sokurov’s Faust in 2011 and Lav Diaz’s The Woman Who Left in 2016. Both times I was already in Toronto when the announcement came.
The most inaccurate cliche about Italians that Venice proves wrong is …
I’m French, and there is the same cliche that we are rude. But this is a misunderstanding. On first meeting, we are often neutral, which some read as rude. But two minutes later, we Latins can be incredibly friendly and open.
Best place in Venice to avoid the crowds (and industry) is …
The Lido is actually a very long island. You can go far to the south or to the north and find quiet, empty spots where you can go for walks and not talk to anyone. If you have enough time, visit one of the other islands — like Murano — which are perfect for a quiet walk in the evening.
The best Venetian food/drink is at …
Le Antiche Carpampane. It’s very old school — in the best way — and a bit away from the center of Venice. Incredibly fresh food, and very traditional. I go every year.
The most overrated Venice hotspot is …
St. Mark’s Square is not over- rated because it’s beautiful. But unless you go there early in the morning, it will be packed with tourists.
This story first appeared in The Hollywood Reporter’s Sept. 1 daily issue at the Venice International Film Festival.
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