Women In Film: Cannes Film Festival

     In 2012, there were no women filmmakers in competition at the Cannes Film Festival, prompting outrage in the film industry. By the 69th Cannes Film Festival, three female directors out of 21 joined in the competition for the Palme d'Or, and their impact has been huge.

     This year, British director Andrea Arnold and German director Maren Ade introduced two of the most admired films of Cannes. Ade’s "Toni Erdmann" is that rarest of birds: a 162-minute-long, crowd-pleasing German comedy.

     There are those who say change has come too slowly to Cannes, however, change always seems to take time. For instance, last year there were two female filmmakers in competition, and this year, there are now three (by the way, French filmmaker Nicole Garcia's "From the Land of the Moon," is the third).

     It should also be noted there are several countries who have set goals to improve gender equality in the film business. The Swedish film institute launched a program in 2012 whose goal was to have state supplied film funding split between men and women filmmakers by 2020; they have already reached that goal. The British Film Institute and other United Kingdom film groups announced a similar program to balance their funding between genders in the coming years.

     The quality of films this year at Cannes has been talked about with great enthusiasm and genius.  After "Toni Erdmann" debuted, it was hailed as an unexpected delight. The Guardian wrote:  "Not only does German humor exist, it might just save your life,".  American Honey, by Andrea Arnold, is a film that also stands out, and has an amazing amount of energy and music. Arnold was fascinated by a New York Times story about traveling bands of teenagers and planned for the film with her own road trip across the U.S.  While on the road, she found a good deal of her cast.  In the film, the call to the road for many teens is the romance of getting out of their homes. Arnold's cast was so engrossed in the adventure of the film, that they often learned their scenes and destinations at the last minute. "I find real life and real people inspiring," Arnold told reporters, adding that she avoids referencing other films or filmmakers. "I try to find my own way. I try to find my own voice."

     Coco & Cyd believe in the power of women. We want to bring attention to the positive changes for women in film and encourage you to explore and support their exceptional cinematography.




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Quote to take with you for the week:

"Perhaps the only thing in my favor is that I am very tenacious. I don't take 'no' very well."

-Kathryn Bigelow



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