After the high hopes for women directors at last year’s Cannes Film Festival (a whopping 4 female-directed films made Palme D’Or shortlist!), Cannes has returned to its 2010 form and have NO films directed by women this year.
Out of the 23 eligible films for one of the most prestigious film awards on the circuit, not one was directed by a woman. Two films directed by women made the “Un Certain Regard” category (for young filmmakers). Nearly 1,800 films were submitted. The submission list is confidential, but surely some women filmmakers submitted their films. So why didn’t they make the cut?
Melissa Silverstein on her Women & Hollywood blog had this to say,
“Cannes is the most prestigious world competition and to have no female directors is just a slap in the face. I cannot believe there were no films worthy of inclusion. I just don’t believe it. The whole process is f***ed up that women can’t even get into the conversations about films that people are even thinking about will be included in lineups.”
The culture of the film industry is still male-dominated. The big, narrative pictures still fall mainly to male directors, women still have limited seats in the most powerful positions in the industry (see my earlier post on The Celluloid Ceiling).
Thank heavens for the Tribeca Film Festival, which has a good representation of female directors, including Sarah Polley (Take This Waltz), Julie Delphy (2 Days in New York), Lynn Shelton (Your Sister’s Sister), Tanya Wexler (Hysteria), Malgorzata Szumowska (Elles), Julia Dyer (The Playroom), Sharon Bar-Ziv (Room 514), Lucy Malloy (Una Noche), Kat Cairo (While We Were Here), and Beth Murphy (The List).