Open main menu

The Volpi Cup (Italian: Coppa Volpi) is the principal award given to actors at the Venice Film Festival and is named in honor of Count Giuseppe Volpi di Misurata, the founder of the Venice Film Festival. The name and number of prizes have been changed several times since their introduction, ranging from two to four awards per edition and sometimes acknowledging both leading and supporting performances.

The festival was officially competitive for the first time in 1934. The acting award was named Grande medaglia d'oro dell'Associazione Nazionale Fascista dello Spettacolo per il migliore attore (Great Gold Medal of the National Fascist Association for Entertainment for the Best Actor). After a four-year hiatus caused by the war, the festival was once again competitive in 1947. The acting award in the immediate post-war period was named Premio Internazionale per il migliore attore (International Award for the Best Actor).[1][2][3][4] The festival was again competitive in 1980 but the acting awards given by the competition jury were not reinstated until 1983: the prizes were no longer called Coppa Volpi (Volpi Cup) but were simply referred to as Premio per il migliore attore (Best Actor Award). The winners did not receive cup-shaped awards but were instead given rectangular plaques. In 1988, for the first time in 20 years, the most recognizable prizes of the festival were re-established. The two acting award was officially named Coppa Volpi per la migliore interpretazione maschile (Volpi Cup for the Best Actor).[5]


Award winnersEdit

The following actors received the Volpi Cup or other major Best Actor Award:[6][7]

Table key
Indicates the performance was also an Academy Award winner
Indicates the performance was also nominated for an Academy Award
Year Actor Role Film Nationality of actor
1932 & 1934 - Awarded as "Great Gold Medal of the National Fascist Association for Entertainment for the Best Actor"
1932 Fredric March (Special Award) Dr. Henry Jekyll / Edward Hyde Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde United States
1934 Wallace Beery[8] (Special Award) Pancho Villa Viva Villa! United States
1935-1942 - Awarded as "Volpi Cup"
1935 Pierre Blanchar Raskolnikov Crime and Punishment (Crime et châtiment) France
1936 Paul Muni Louis Pasteur The Story of Louis Pasteur United States
1937 Emil Jannings Matthias Clausen Der Herrscher Germany
1938 Leslie Howard Professor Henry Higgins ‡ Pygmalion United Kingdom
No Award
No Award
1941 Ermete Zacconi Don Geronimo Buonaparte Don Buonaparte Italy
1942 Fosco Giachetti Captain Enrico Berti Bengasi Italy
1947-1950 - Awarded as "International Award for the Best Actor"
No Award
1947 Pierre Fresnay Vincent de Paul Monsieur Vincent France
1948 Ernst Deutsch Scharf The Trial Austria
1949 Joseph Cotten Eben Adams Portrait of Jennie United States
1950 Sam Jaffe Erwin “Doc” Riedenschneider ‡ The Asphalt Jungle United States
1951-1968 - Awarded as "Volpi Cup"
1951 Jean Gabin Raymond Pinsard The Night Is My Kingdom (La nuit est mon royaume) France
1952 Fredric March Willy Loman Death of a Salesman United States
1953 Henri Vilbert François Dupont Le bon Dieu sans confession France
1954 Jean Gabin Victor Le Garrec Air of Paris France
Max ("Max le Menteur") Touchez pas au grisbi
1955 Curd Jürgens (Tie) Wolf Gerke Heroes and Sinners Germany
Kenneth More (Tie) Freddie Page The Deep Blue Sea United Kingdom
1956 Bourvil Marcel Martin The Trip Across Paris France
1957 Anthony Franciosa Polo Pope ‡ A Hatful of Rain United States
1958 Alec Guinness Gulley Jimson The Horse’s Mouth United Kingdom
1959 James Stewart Paul Biegler ‡ Anatomy of a Murder United States
1960 John Mills Lt. Col. Basil Barrow Tunes of Glory United Kingdom
1961 Toshirō Mifune Sanjuro Yojimbo Japan
1962 Burt Lancaster Robert Stroud Birdman of Alcatraz United States
1963 Albert Finney Tom Jones ‡ Tom Jones United Kingdom
1964 Tom Courtenay Private Arthur Hamp King & Country United Kingdom
1965 Toshirō Mifune Dr. Kyojō Niide Red Beard Japan
1966 Jacques Perrin Michele Almost a Man France
1967 Ljubiša Samardžić Mali The Morning Yugoslavia
1968 John Marley Richard Forst Faces United States
1983–1987 - Awarded as "Best Actor Award"
1983 Guy Boyd (Tie) Rooney Streamers United States
George Dzundza (Tie) Cokes
David Alan Grier (Tie) Roger
Mitchell Lichtenstein (Tie) Richie
Matthew Modine (Tie) Billy
Michael Wright (Tie) Carlyle
1984 Naseeruddin Shah Naurangia Paar India
1985 Gérard Depardieu Louis Vincent Mangin Police France
1986 Carlo Delle Piane Antonio Sant’Elia Regalo di Natale Italy
1987 Hugh Grant (Tie) Clive Durham Maurice United Kingdom
James Wilby (Tie) Maurice Hall
1988-present - Awarded as "Volpi Cup for the Best Actor" (also "Volpi Cup for the Best Supporting Actor")
1988 Don Ameche (Tie) Gino Things Change United States
Joe Mantegna (Tie) Jerry
1989 Marcello Mastroianni (Tie) Marcello What Time Is It? Italy
Massimo Troisi (Tie) Michele
1990 Oleg Borisov Svidetel / Christo Panov The Only Witness Soviet Union
1991 River Phoenix Mikey Waters My Own Private Idaho United States
1992 Jack Lemmon Shelley “The Machine” Levene Glengarry Glen Ross United States
1993 Fabrizio Bentivoglio Pietro De Leo A Soul Split in Two Italy
Marcello Mastroianni (Supporting) Constantin Laspada 1, 2, 3, Sun
1994 Xia Yu Ma Xiaojun
In the Heat of the Sun China
Roberto Citran (Supporting) Loris Il Toro Italy
1995 Götz George Fritz Haarmann
Deathmaker Germany
Ian Hart (Supporting) Ginger Nothing Personal United Kingdom
1996 Liam Neeson Michael Collins
Michael Collins United Kingdom
Chris Penn (Supporting) Cesarian "Chez" Tempio The Funeral United States
1997 Wesley Snipes Max Carlyle One Night Stand United States
1998 Sean Penn Eddie Hurlyburly United States
1999 Jim Broadbent W.S. Gilbert Topsy-Turvy United Kingdom
2000 Javier Bardem Reinaldo Arenas Before Night Falls Spain
2001 Luigi Lo Cascio Antonio Light of My Eyes Italy
2002 Stefano Accorsi Dino Campana A Journey Called Love Italy
2003 Sean Penn Paul Rivers 21 Grams United States
2004 Javier Bardem Ramón Sampedro The Sea Inside Spain
2005 David Strathairn Edward R. Murrow Good Night, and Good Luck United States
2006 Ben Affleck George Reeves Hollywoodland United States
2007 Brad Pitt Jesse James The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford United States
2008 Silvio Orlando Michele Casali Giovanna's Father Italy
2009 Colin Firth George Falconer ‡ A Single Man United Kingdom
2010 Vincent Gallo Mohammed Essential Killing United States
2011 Michael Fassbender Brandon Sullivan Shame Ireland
2012 Joaquin Phoenix (Tie) Freddie Quell ‡ The Master United States
Philip Seymour Hoffman (Tie) Lancaster Dodd ‡
2013 Themis Panou Father Miss Violence Greece
2014 Adam Driver Jude Hungry Hearts Italy
2015 Fabrice Luchini Michel Racine Courted France
2016 Oscar Martínez Daniel Mantovani The Distinguished Citizen Argentina
2017 Kamel El Basha Yasser Abdallah Salameh The Insult Palestine
2018 Willem Dafoe Vincent Van Gogh At Eternity's Gate United States

Multiple winnersEdit

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "La Magnani premiata come miglior attrice". La Stampa. 16 September 1947. Retrieved 2013-08-05.
  2. ^ "Il Gran Premio ad "Amleto" di Olivier". La Stampa. 5 September 1948. Retrieved 2013-08-05.
  3. ^ "L'assegnazione dei diciassette premi". L'Unità. 2 September 1949. Retrieved 2013-08-05.
  4. ^ "L'assegnazione dei premi". La Stampa. 11 September 1950. Retrieved 2013-08-05.
  5. ^ "Tutti i premiati". La Stampa. 10 September 1988. Retrieved 2013-10-06.
  6. ^ "Coppa Volpi for best actors since 1935". Archived from the original on 7 July 2013. Retrieved 20 April 2013.
  7. ^ "Volpi Cup for Best Actor". Retrieved 26 March 2018.
  8. ^ Beery received an award titled the Great Gold Medal of the National Fascist Association for Entertainment for the Best Actor"I divertimenti". La Stampa. 5 December 1934. Retrieved 2013-10-05.

External linksEdit