The Cannes Film Festival tomorrow will raise the curtain on its 75th edition, which will bet on “looking to the future” and in which a total of 21 films -only five led by women- will compete for the Palme d’Or between May 17 and 28.
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As part of this look to the future, the event will host, between May 24 and 25, a symposium organized by the Mexican Guillermo del Toro in which a group of filmmakers will debate the future of their profession, he announced at a press conference its delegate general, Thierry Frémaux.
“When we turn 70 we focus on the history of the festival and now we want to look to the future”, said Frémaux, an analysis that will take into account “everything that has happened in these five years: the explosion of directors and young filmmakers and what cinema has suffered” in the two years of the pandemic.
The festival, which starts tomorrow with the out-of-competition screening of the zombie comedy “Coupez!” by Michel Hazanavicius, has suffered an attack on its computer systems on the previous day that has blocked the ticket reservation system for hours.
Despite this, Frémaux has assured that the system has improved compared to last year, when it was launched for the first time to avoid queues at the entrances of the projection rooms.
In its traditional balance between auteur cinema, Hollywood “blockbusters” and its political commitment, this year Cannes will receive film masters such as David Cronenberg and George Miller and stars such as Tom Cruise, Anne Hathaway, Tilda Swinton and Idris Elba.
Tom Cruise will receive a tribute next Wednesday and will present his sequel to “Top Gun” at a special screening. “He is one of the most successful actors in his projects in the history of cinema and he has remained faithful to the directors with whom he has worked,” said Frémaux, who has also highlighted his total dedication to cinema since he has never done ” series or advertising.
Regarding the political situation, Frémaux began the press conference by expressing his “total and non-negotiable” support for the Ukrainian people and its president, a support that will become palpable with screenings such as “Mariuopolis 2”, the posthumous documentary filmed in Ukraine by the Lithuanian filmmaker Mantas Kvedaravicius, shot down by Russian soldiers in Mariupol on April 2nd.
Regarding the Russian presence, he recalled that they maintain the position announced at the beginning of the war of not receiving “any official representation”, neither from government agencies nor from journalists who work in official media.
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The Russian dissident Kirill Serebrennikov (“Tchaikovsky’s Wife”), who recently managed to leave his country after serving house arrest, does compete in the official section. On the position of those calling for a “total boycott”, Frémaux has said that he can understand it since it is about “people who are under bombs, in a country attacked and invaded”.
As for the five women directors in the official section -Claire Denis, Kelly Reichardt, Valeria Bruni Tedeschi, Leonor Serraille and Charlotte Vandermeersch- she has defended that “they are not few”, and that 25% corresponds to the percentage of female applicants.
She also stressed that in the case of French cinema, women represent 65% in the official section because “France is a country with many female directors”, she recalled that there is parity in the juries and that last year women won in all sections . “Things are evolving in a positive way,” she insisted.
As of July 1, it will also be a woman who will take over as president of the festival from Pierre Lescure, the German Iris Knobloch, who will remain in charge for the next three years.
* With information from EFE.