ROME – Venice Film Festival artistic director Marco Mueller is being honored by Russia with its prestigious Orden Druzhby (Order of Friendship) nod, bestowed on personalities that promote international and intercultural relations.
Mueller over the years has curated many Russian cinema events and retros, in his various guises as director of several film festivals, including Pesaro, Rotterdam, Locarno and, of course, Venice.
In his decade at Locarno, Mueller started in-depth work on a series of “Secret History of Russian Cinema” events and in particular on “forgotten films” blocked by censorship under Stalin and later censors, which finally resulted in the retrospective on a wide range of Russian musicals, which he prepared with Alena Shumakova for the 2007 Venice Film Festival.
Over the past seven years, under Mueller’s guidance, the Venice Film Festival has helped launch many new Russian filmmakers and underscore the importance of contempo Russian cinema’s new leading lights.
The Orden Druzhby, given by presidential decree, is the Russian Federation’s highest prize that can be assigned to a foreign national.