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Cannes counts its numbers

Sylvester Stallone, AKA Rocky Balboa AKA John Rambo will be in Cannes to announce the forthcoming release of his brand new film RAMBO V : LAST BLOOD. The Festival will be honouring him on the 24th of May by screening a restored 4K print of RAMBO : FIRST BLOOD before which the star will share the first images of his new film. Sylvester Stallone wrote or co-wrote almost all his films and the journalist Didier Allouch, who is also the correspondent of Cannes Film Festival in Los Angeles will conduct a master class with Stallone, exploring his career as a writer and actor.

The festival will honour the veteran actor Alain Delon with an honorary Golden Palm on May 19. That morning, Samuel Blumenfeld, journalist at Le Monde will be in conversation with the legendary actor in a Master Class format.  Cannes film festival this year will also host master classes with  the Danish director of the much acclaimed DRIVE and the Chinese Actress Zhang Ziyi who started her career in Zhang Yimou’s THE ROAD HOME. The world remembers her for her roles in Ang Lee’s CROUCHING TIGER : HIDDEN DRAGON and Zhang Yimou’s THE HOUSE OF FLYING DAGGERS.

In the midst of all creative, academic and business activities, Cannes has not forgotten to do some number crunching. The Festival received 1845 feature films and 4240 short films for consideration in the Official sections. It will screen 8 debut features in its official sections and a total of 26 first features for the Golden Camera award with the debut films in the side bar Directors’ Fortnight and Critics’ Week. The official selections represent 39 countries as producers/co-producers.

Being a signatory to 5050 X 2020 Gender Equality statement, the festival is well on its way on this commitment. The Festival team in Paris working from January onwards consists of 109 personnel of whom 66 are women bring their score to 61%. In Cannes 865 more people join the team of which 46% are women. To quote the Festival, “The 2019 team will comprise of 974 people, 468 women and 506 men, bringing the women to 48%.

The Selection Committee consisted of four women and four men.
Stéphanie Lamome has also joined Film Department Head Christian Jeune in January 2019, as artistic advisor.

Presidents have been appointed in the respect of gender equality across the four juries:
– Competition : Alejandro González Iñárritu
– Un Certain Regard : Nadine Labaki
– Caméra d’or : Rithy Panh
– Short films and Cinéfondation : Claire Denis

“The four juries are formed as below:
– Competition : 4 men, 4 women (and for the first time, 3 of them being directors),
– Un Certain Regard : 2 men, 2 women,
– Caméra d’or : 2 women, 2 men,
– Short films and Cinéfondation : 3 men, 1 woman.

“Female directors in the Selection process:
For the first time, the Festival has methodically counted the female directors submitting their film for the Selection, with the results as below :
-26% of the feature films submitted to be part of the Cannes selection have been directed by  women.
-32% of the short films submitted to the competition have been directed by women.
-44% of the school films submitted to the Cinéfondation selection have been directed by women.
These three numbers, embodying three « generations » of filmmakers, are full of meaning since they prove that women’s presence is going to be more and more important in the future.

“Selected female directors
20 female directors are part of the 2019 Official Selection with :
– 4 in Competition,
– 8 in Un Certain Regard,
– 3 Special Screenings
– 5 in the Short Films Competition

In 2018, there were 11 female directors, 12 in 2017, 9 in 2016, 6 in 2015.
“It is worth noting that the Festival’s two opening films have been selected in the respect of gender equality, with Jim Jarmusch opening the Competition and Monia Chokri opening Un Certain Regard.
“The Competition is gathering 4 female directors and 17 male directors, hence 19%.
Un Certain Regard is gathering 8 female directors and 11 male directors, hence 42%.
Special Screenings are gathering 3 female directors and 8 male directors, hence 27%.
The Short Films Competition is gathering 5 female directors and 7 male directors, hence 42%.
The Caméra d’or is gathering 13 female directors and 12 male directors, hence a 52% proportion. Among them, 8 are part of the Official Selection, which represents 61,5%.
“As a whole, 19 of the 69 films in the Official Selection (features and shorts) have been directed by women, which represents 27,5%.” Interesting data. Strong commitment to the cause. Bravo Cannes.  Way to go.

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