Venice Film Fest 2017: Annette Bening’s Emotional Speech

The emotional highlight of the opening night of the 2017 Venice Film Fest, which kicked off tonight with the world premiere of Alexander Payne’s Downsizing, was Annette Bening’s eloquently delivered, highly personal speech, which also wrapped up the ceremony:

“For me cinema is magic, and I think all of us who make films are primarily audience members. We make films because we love to watch them. And to me the moment when the lights come down in the theatre and there’s a moment of silence and darkness; that is the moment of possibility. When all of us — it doesn’t matter of you are the president or the usher, or whether you are Italian or American or Iranian or Chinese or a man or a woman — we can lose ourselves in the best way possible and become free. And become like children again: open, curious and available to the possibility of the moment,” she said.

“This is what we aspire to. Along with my fellow jury members, we bring all of our passions and enthusiasm and hopefully some knowledge, but most importantly our deep love of cinema, to every film that we see. I am deeply honored to be president of the jury.”