The Italian Almanac

Sidney Lumet

Fellini Prize

American director Sidney Lumet will be the recipient of this year's Fellini Prize, a lifetime achievement award given by Italy's prestigious Federico Fellini Foundation. The prize - a gold-leaf statue bearing a dream-like drawing by the Italian maestro - will be awarded on November 7 at the end of two days of events organised in Rimini by the foundation in the memory of the Oscar-winning Italian director.

The decision to give the award to the 85-year-old American director, explained the foundation's chairman, Italian director Pupi Avati, ''was based on the same criteria used in choosing previous prize winners: the number of films he made, the variety of themes his films dealt with and his ability to explore all of film's possibilities and potential even when running great risks''.

Lumet is the director of over 40 films including The Verdict (1982), Network (1977), Dog Day Afternoon (1976) and Twelve Angry Men (1958), all of which received Oscar nominations. Although he has never won an Oscar for directing, Lumet received an honorary Oscar award in 2005. Critics see the first half of the 1960s as Lumet's most prolific period when he made such film classics as A Long Day's Journey into Night (1962), Fail-Safe (1964), The Pawnbroker (1964) and The Hill (1965). His comeback in the 1970s kicked off with the film Serpico.

The Fellini Foundation, which is based in his home town Rimini, was set up in 1995 at the request of Fellini's sister Maddalena with the aim of conserving and promoting the memory of her brother and his work. Fellini died in 1993 at the age of 73, leaving behind a body of work which included four Oscar-winning films: La Strada (1954); Le Notti di Cabiria (1957); 8 1/2 (1963) and Amarcord (1973). His other films included perhaps his greatest, La Dolce Vita (1960) as well as Juliette of the Spirits (1963), Satyricon (1969) and Roma (1972).