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Cannes Wrap-Up: Festival President Admits They Need to Work Harder to Include Women Directors

Women and Hollywood By Melissa Silverstein | Women and Hollywood May 29, 2012 at 11:25AM

Cannes wrapped up this weekend with Austrian filmmaker Michael Haneke winning the Palme d'Or for Amour.  He also won the Palme d'Or in 2009 for the last film he had in the festival, White Ribbon. 
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But he also said:

The job of feminists and of people like me who like the work of female film-makers is to say to him: 'Are you sure there isn't somewhere a film by a woman that deserves to be competing?' That is always the conversation we have here."

I find that statement very confusing.  Did this conversation actually happen?  Because if it did then that means several female directed films were considered and rejected.  It would be great to know what was considered. 

He also admitted that by having four films by women last year in 2011--  after having no women directed films in 2010 -- probably set a bad precedent because then this year people would again expect four women -- or more -- to be in competition. 

Now everyone this year was expecting five films, then six, then seven. In France nowadays, they speak of parity. They want parity in government, parity everywhere, so why not at the Cannes film festival?"

Parity, parity, parity.  Damn those crazy women who want equality and parity.  La Barbe totally had it right in their manifesto where they talked about how last year "four women somehow sneaked themselves in..."

Congrats and thanks to everyone who took this issue seriously.  This matters because culture is important and it is vital that women's experiences be included in the cultural conversations.  We want girls and young women to believe that parity is possible that they won't be condescended to when they demand their rightful place at the table in any area they choose.