'Nocturnal Animals,' 'Lion' Compete for Italy's Top Film Prize

Courtesy of Focus Features
'Nocturnal Animals'

The David Di Donatello Awards honor the best cinema of the year.

Italy's top film award, the David Di Donatello, honors the best cinema released in the country each year, and this year's top foreign-film contenders, announced Tuesday, include Nocturnal Animals, directed by Tom Ford (which won the Silver Lion in Venice); Captain Fantastic, helmed by Matt Ross; Lion, directed by Garth Davis; Paterson, helmed by Jim Jarmusch; and Sully, directed by Clint Eastwood. 

The prize, voted on by 1,429 members of L'accademia del Cinema Italiano, recognizes films released between Feb. 29-Dec. 31, 2016. Other popular Oscar contenders including La La Land, Moonlight and Manchester by the Sea, which were released early this year, are not eligible for the 2017 awards. 

Recent award winners for the foreign category include The Grand Budapest Hotel, Birdman and Bridge of Spies

The five films competing for the best film award and best director award include Marco Bellocchio's Sweet Dreams, Claudio Giovannesi's Fiore, Edoardo De Angelis' Indivisible, Paolo Virzi 's Like Crazy and Matteo Rovere's Italian Race.

The features in the running for best European film are Florence Foster Jenkins, directed by Stephen Frears; I, Daniel Blake, helmed by Ken Loach; Julieta, directed by Pedro Almodovar; Sing Street, helmed by John Carney; and Truman, directed by Cesc Gay. 

The 61st David Di Donatello awards will be broadcast March 27 on Sky Cinema Uno, Sky Uno, Sky Arte, TV8 and on a special Sky David Di Donatello channel dedicated to past winners.