VENICE, Italy — Ben Affleck, who has been working to get back on track an acting career that's been sidelined by his romance with Jennifer Lopez as well as his choices in film projects, got a vote of approval Saturday at the Venice Film Festival.
Affleck was named best actor for his starring role in Allen Coulter's "Hollywoodland," which dramatizes an investigation into the death of George Reeves, star of the 1950s TV series "The Adventures of Superman."
Helen Mirren was named best actress for her portrayal of Queen Elizabeth II in Stephen Frears' "The Queen," which also took the festival's prize for best script.
The Golden Lion award, the Venice festival's top honor, went to the Chinese movie "Still Life," a surprise entry set against the backdrop of China's gigantic Three Gorges Dam project. Directed by Jia Zhang-ke, "Still Life" was a late entry in the festival and ended up trumping candidates that included Emilio Estevez's film "Bobby," about the assassination of Robert F. Kennedy, and "The Queen," which explores the days that followed the death of Princess Diana.