Stars gather at Cannes for the first festival since the Weinstein scandal

Cristina Cross
May 9, 2018

Still, the shadow of disgraced film mogul Weinstein is looming over this year's Cannes.

"We want to keep pace with a world that's changing", Fremaux explained during the impromptu press conference. I am humbled by the privilege and responsibility of presiding over this year's jury.

He has starred in several critically acclaimed Chinese-language films including Hou Hsiao-hsien's "The Assassin", which won the best director award at Cannes in 2015.

Earlier, it won a 15,000 Dollars prize in the Asian Project Market in the framework of the Busan Film Festival in October 2017.

"The cinema has always been in the hands of men", said Fremaux.

Despite the "female majority" jury, the irony of just three women directors competing for the top award - Eva Husson for Girls of the Sun, Nadine Labaki for Capernaum and Alice Rohrwacher for Lazzro Felice (Happy as Lazzaro) - wasn't lost on many. A-listers, filmmakers and festival representatives will take to the famous Cannes red carpet at weekend for as part of a symbolic gesture to "affirm their presence", according to event boss Thierry Fremaux, who announced the big news at a press conference on Monday, May 7.

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Cannes has been closely watched for how it would react to the fallout following the downfall of Weinstein, previously an omnipresent figure at Cannes. The 48-year-old has emerged as a key figure in Hollywood's fight against sexual harassment.

Cate Blanchett was in very high spirits on the eve of Cannes Film Festival on Monday.

"Not only Cannes, but the whole world changed last September..."

The director left the door open for improved relations with Netflix. This year, only three of the 21 films in the main Competition have been helmed by women, but the festival's 18-film Un certain regard selection features as many as seven women directors.

Netflix in turn withdrew its films altogether — including Alfonso Cuaron's "Roma" and the Orson Welles film "The Other Side of the Wind" — in a public spat that Reed Hastings, Netflix's chief executive, recently expressed regret over. "I hope so", Blanchett said.

Anna Karina arrives at the opening ceremony and screening of the film "Everybody Knows" (Todos lo saben) in competition, Cannes, France, May 8, 2018. In a broader, separate case over the rights to the film, a Paris court issued a ruling favorable to Branco past year. This year is episode two.

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That change is clearly being seen and felt across the festival this year.

On Saturday evening, when about 100 top actresses and female film directors will stage a protest on the red carpet at the Cannes film festival to support the #MeToo movement against sexual harassment, it'll do so with the support of the Cannes Film Festival. "We look at the past with the glasses of today".

But Danish provocateur filmmaker Lars von Trier will return to Cannes seven years after being declared "persona non grata" for joking about being a Nazi and having sympathy for Hitler.

"He is not anti-Semitic". He has banned selfies from the red carpet, irritated by their interruption to the highly orchestrated, star-studded procession on the most famous red carpet next to the Oscars. "It's ridiculous", Fremaux said.

Cannes never mentions the country of origin while listing the films.

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