The first “Esposizione d’Arte Cinematografica” came into being in 1932 as part of the 18th Venice Biennale. The 1932 Film Festival - the first international event of its type - was held on the terrace of the Hotel Excelsior on the Venice Lido, and while at that stage it was not a competitive event, it included foremost films which became classics in the history of cinema.
The second Festival was held in 1934 and for the first time it included a competition. The Festival became an annual event in 1935, which was a clear sign of its international success. In more than 85 years of history, the Venice Film Festival did not take place during World War II and in the mid-70s, due to the reform of the Biennale.