Socially-committed filmmaker to receive Golden Lion

ROME — The Venice Film Festival will honor revered Italo helmer Francesco Rosi, known as a master of socially-committed filmmaking, with its Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement.

The works of Rosi, who is 89, delve into Italy’s still timely ills, notably the Mafia, corrupted pols, and the socioeconomic divide between the country’s north and south.

Works he is known for include 1962 Berlin Silver Bear winner “Salvatore Giuliano,” which rigorously reconstructs the perverse criminal power play in postwar Sicily; “Hands Over the City,” which takes on rapacious real-estate developers and their political cronies in Naples, and scooped the 1963 Venice Golden Lion; and investigative drama “The Mattei Affair,” which took the 1972 Cannes Palme d’Or.

“The Mattei Affair,” about the shady death of a powerful Italo oil exec, will unspool on the Lido on Aug. 31, following Rosi’s prize ceremony, in a print freshly restored by Martin Scorsese’s The Film Foundation.

“Rosi’s work has influenced generations of filmmakers around the world for its method, style, moral rigor and ability to bring urgent social issues to the screen,” said Venice artistic topper Alberto Barbera.

The 69th edition of Venice will run Aug. 29-Sept. 8.

Follow @Variety on Twitter for breaking news, reviews and more