|Golden Lion (Leone d'Oro)|
|Currently held by|
The Golden Lion (
The prize was introduced in 1949 as the Golden
The prize was first awarded in 1949. Previously, the equivalent prize was the Gran Premio Internazionale di Venezia (Grand International Prize of Venice), awarded in 1947 and 1948. No Golden Lions were awarded between 1969 and 1979. According to the Biennale's official website, this hiatus was a result of the 1968 Lion being awarded to the radically experimental
Although prior to 1980, only 3 of 21 winners were of non-European origins, since the 1980s, the Golden Lion has been presented to a number of Asian filmmakers, particularly in comparison to the Cannes Film Festival's top prize, the Palme d'Or, which has only been awarded to five Asian filmmakers since 1980. The Golden Lion, by contrast, has been awarded to ten Asians during the same time period, with two of these filmmakers winning it twice. Ang Lee won the Golden Lion twice within three years during the 2000s, once for an American film and once for a Chinese-language film.
Still, to date 33 of the 54 winners were European men (including Soviet/Russian winners). Since 1949, only four women have ever won the Golden Lion for directing: