The 76th Venice Film Festival will spotlight three Netflix productions alongside Hollywood films in its lineup. Venice has been more welcoming of the streaming giant than the Cannes Film Festival, which shut out Netflix for the second year in a row.
Venice’s 21 competing titles, announced Thursday in Rome, include Netflix dramas The Laundromat starring Meryl Streep and Antonio Banderas, Marriage Story featuring Scarlett Johansson, and David Michôd’s The King, an adaptation of Shakespearean plays.
The world’s oldest film festival runs Aug. 28 to Sept. 7. It also features Hollywood productions like Joker with Joaquin Phoenix and Ad Astra starring Brad Pitt.
While Venice embraces Netflix, Cannes has refused to include the streaming service’s movies in its competition due to opposition from French exhibitors and the country’s strict screening policies. After the festival rejected Alfonso Cuarón’s Netflix movie Roma, the film went on to earn 10 Oscar nominations, including best picture.
Earlier this year, the Berlin Film Festival featured its first Netflix film, Isabel Coixet’s drama Elisa y Marcela, drawing outrage from protesters who claim Netflix fails to play by the rules.
In a statement released Thursday, the International Union of Cinemas, a group representing movie theater operators in 38 European territories, criticized Venice’s inclusion of Netflix films, calling it a “marketing tool.” —M.J.