Cannes: ‘Sicario’ Director Denis Villeneuve on Exploring the “Reality of Women …

20 May 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Cannes faces backlash after women reportedly barred from film screening for not wearing high heels.

The red carpet at the Cannes film festival is an elysium of old-fashioned glitz and glamour, but the festival faced controversy on Tuesday after it emerged that it takes the odd bout of tyrannical fashion policing to keep it that way. A group of women in their 50s were turned away from the gala screening of Todd Haynes’s Carol for allegedly not wearing high-heeled shoes, according to industry newspaper Screen Daily.

Based on an original screenplay by Taylor Sheridan, the drama, which Lionsgate is distributing stateside, stars Emily Blunt as an FBI agent who teams up with Benicio Del Toro and Josh Brolin to bring down a Mexican drug lord. The festival on France’s south coast — like the wider film industry that feeds it — has a reputation for male domination, so there was some relief that this year’s official selection opened things up a bit. Many are criticising the festival after Screen International reported that several middle-aged women were refused entry to Sunday’s premiere of Todd Haynes’ ‘50s lesbian romance “Carol” for wearing flats. “Everyone should wear flats, to be honest, at the best of times” said Blunt, who was there to premiere the Mexican drug war thriller “Sicario”. “You kind of think that there’s these new waves of equality”.

The lady launched the first look of her comeback vehicle- ‘Jazbaa’ – on Tuesday and before promoting the movie, she recorded a video message, informing her fans about ‘Hack The Cannes’. The director — who’s readying his next film, Story of Your Life, in which Amy Adams plays a linguist encountering aliens, while also developing a Blade Runner sequel — spoke with THR about the importance of strong women characters, the pressure that comes with directing a sequel to a classic, and flying the flag for Canada in Cannes. A female director, Emmanuelle Bercot, opened the festival for only the second time in its history and Agnes Varda will be the first female recipient of the honorary lifetime achievement award. I should say it’s a big compliment, because doing a movie in Los Angeles, away from my home country, there’s always a fear that I could lose my identity as a filmmaker.

The competition includes two women directors where often there are none, and the most critically lauded entry so far — “Carol” starring a lavishly praised Cate Blanchett — focuses on repressed lesbian love. Because I have a gun?” Oscar-winner Natalie Portman, who has been all over the seaside Croisette promoting her directorial debut “A Tale of Love and Darkness” this week, said women-led productions were still being written off as “vanity projects”. “I remember as a kid when Barbra Streisand would make movies that she was in and people would say, ‘oh it’s vanity, it’s a vanity thing’,” said Portman, criticising the “completely imbalanced” industry that means women direct only a tiny fraction of Hollywood pictures. A talk about gender on the sidelines of the festival opened with the statistic that only 4.6 percent of US studio films were directed by women last year, and not one Oscar best picture nominee featured a female protagonist. Speaking at the talk, Salma Hayek argued real change would come not from token gestures at festivals but from a realisation that women can bring in the bucks. In the industry marketplace that runs alongside the festival, sales have been increasingly focused on women viewers this year. “It used to be all about action-driven things with a male demographic, the Stallone-Schwarzenegger type movie,” said Scott Roxborough, a journalist with The Hollywood Reporter. “Everyone now is trying to get women on board to try to appeal to a female audience and not just grab teenage boys.

Richter said: “We put on the dress and make an effort to be formal and festive, but to demand heels is not right.” Cannes’s red-carpet screenings are by invitation only. To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here. Published guidelines are hard to come by, but it is generally understood that men must wear black tie with black shoes and women must be elegantly dressed with smart footwear. When he said that to me, I felt it was a very strong, beautiful part for a woman, and that is something that doesn’t exist very oft�en, so the fact that she’s a woman is important. Ironically, Carol, the film to which the flat-wearing guests were allegedly denied entry, is perhaps the film in competition at Cannes with the strongest feminist message.

Based on the book by Patricia Highsmith (herself an avid fan of loafers), it tells the story of a young shop assistant, played by Rooney Mara, who embarks on an affair with a married older woman. Outside the Palais, 20-year-old Tami was one of many film fans hopeful of being given a spare ticket to the Tuesday-night premiere by a charitable delegate.

She was carrying her high heels in a plastic bag. “It says on your ticket that you have to be smartly dressed,” she said. “For women that means high heels. Do you ever talk to fellow Quebec director Jean-Marc Vallee (Dallas Buyers Club) and together wonder when, as busy as you are in Hollywood, you will ever get back to Montreal to make a French-language movie?

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