Brillante wins special award in Venice

Posted at 09/08/2012 6:08 PM | Updated as of 09/10/2012 2:56 PM

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – Brillante Mendoza, the director of the lone Filipino film at the ongoing 69th Venice Film Festival, was honored with a special award on Saturday.

Brillante Mendoza accepts the La Navicella Venezia Cinema Award for his film 'Thy Womb.' Photo courtesy of Melvin Mangada

The La Navicella Venezia Cinema Award was conferred by the Rivista del Cinematografo on Mendoza, the director of the independent film "Thy Womb," Saturday morning in Italy.

Composed of film critics, Rivista del Cinematografo or Journal of Cinema, has been giving recognition to participating films at the yearly Venice film festival since 2000. The La Navicella prize is given to a film director "particularly relevant for the affirmation of human values."

Mendoza's award comes a day after the conferment of the Bisato d' Oro Award on veteran actress Nora Aunor, who portrays a Badjao midwife coping with her own infertility in "Thy Womb."

Alternately titled "Sinapupunan," the Filipino independent film is up against 17 others vying for the Golden Lion award, the highest prize given to a film at the yearly gathering in Italy.

The prize, introduced in 1949, is also regarded as among the most distinguished in the film industry at large.

The cast of "Thy Womb," which includes Lovi Poe and Mercedes Cabral, received a 5-minute standing ovation after the film’s screening at the prestigious film fest.