Brad Pitt’s Ad Astra, Joaquin Phoenix’s Joker join 2019 Venice Film Festival lineup

The oldest film festival in the world is once again primed to launch budding Oscar contenders into the awards race.

The 2019 Venice Film Festival announced its full slate of official selections on Thursday morning, setting the pre-Oscar stage with new entries from respected directors such as James Gray (the long-gestating Brad Pitt sci-fi drama Ad Astra), Noah Baumbach (Scarlett Johansson‘s marital drama Marriage Story), Todd Phillips (the Joaquin Phoenix-led comic book adaptation Joker), Jackie helmer Pablo Larrain (Ema), and Steven Soderbergh (Panama Papers comedy The Laundromat, starring Meryl Streep, Gary Oldman, and Antonio Banderas) — all of which will compete for the Golden Lion, the festival’s top jury-awarded prize.

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