It’s official. Chloé Zhao’s, Nomadland has just won the Golden Lion at this years Venice Film Festival. Nomadland stars two time Academy Award winner, Frances McDormand, and according to IMDb, Nomadland follows a woman in her sixties who, after losing everything in the Great Recession, embarks on a journey through the American West, living as a van-dwelling modern-day nomad.
History was also made today, with Nomadland becoming the first film directed by an East Asian woman, Chloé Zhao, to win the highest honor that Venice has to offer. Coming off the massive news The Academy dropped about “Inclusion and Representation Standards”, this feels like it is a step in the right direction.
Last year’s Lion winner, Joker, ended up becoming the most nominated film at 92nd Academy Awards. Although they did not end up winning Best Picture, they made quite the statement with their eleven nominations and two wins. What’s interesting is that since 2000, only four Golden Lion winners have gone on to be nominated for Best Picture at The Oscars. And in those four, only on one occasion has it won. It happened with Guillermo del Toro’s, The Shape of Water. Does that mean that Nomadland is out of the question? Absolutely not. We’ve learned as recently as last year, that records were meant to be broken, as Parasite became the first-ever International Film to win Best Picture at the Academy Awards. And with a cast consisting of the two-time winner, McDormand, and David Strathairn, nominated for Good Night, and Good Luck, both have officially begun their Oscar campaign with the film. Zhao has done the same, as a frontrunner for not just Best Director, but Adapted Screenplay as well. Nomadland seems to be a real player in this awards season.