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Quentin Tarantino under-fire for Venice Film Festival Favouritism

2010's Venice Film Festival Jury President Quentin Tarantino is at the centre of a favouritism' row as top prizes were awarded to friends and ex-girlfriend Sofia Coppola.

Sofia Coppola's Somewhere received the best-picture trophy, while Alex de La Iglesia, a close friend of Tarantino received two prizes : Best Director and Best Screenplay. The film was widely panned by critics and was not even considered a legitimate contender.

Italian journalists went further to point out that Quentin Tarantino's mentor, Monte Hellman, also received a special career award.

Tarantino denies any wrongdoing and added I remember going to [Hellman] in '92 in Sundance when I had Reservoir Dogs. I actually had a friend on the jury and he said a friend on the jury is the worst person on the jury for you, as they would be too embarrassed to give you a prize. So I wasn't going to let anything like that affect me."

The 2010 Venice Film Festival has been one of the best in recent years, with highly acclaimed films such as Natalie Portman's Black Swan receiving standing ovations. Her role in the movie has been tipped for a potential Oscar nomination. Portman, who was the favorite at the festival left empty handed to the bemusement of critics.

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