It was seen as something of a surprise that the Venice Film Festival jury handed the Golden Lion to Sofia Coppola’s Somewhere, considering that while critics didn’t mind it, there were other films (see: Black Swan) that generated much more excitement and praise. And a day after the ceremony, the Italian press has posited that Somewhere’s victory may have been the result of favoritism on the part of Venice jury president Quentin Tarantino (Coppola is Tarantino’s ex-girlfriend and buddy). Italian film critic Paolo Mereghetti wrote Sunday morning, “the [jury] presidency of Quentin Tarantino runs the risk of being the most obvious conflict of interest, given that Somewhere seemed charming and intriguing but nothing more.”
Tarantino, unsurprisingly, did not take well to the allegations. Questioned after the ceremony, he ranted: “I wasn’t going to let anything like that affect me at all I was just going to literally respond to the film. There was no me steering any direction [Somewhere] enchanted us from the first. Being her friend didn’t affect me or make me sway the jury in any way. The other members of the jury don’t know her at all. They just loved the film. We kept coming back to it, as one of us said, because ‘it’s a great fucking movie,’ all right?” All right.
Venice: Tarantino Accused Of Favouritism [Deadline]