Directors’ Fortnight, the sidebar running alongside the Cannes Film Festival, has unveiled a strong lineup for its 54th edition, which will be the last one for outgoing artistic director Paolo Moretti.
The sidebar has landed a pair of movies from A24, Alex Garland’s horror film “Men” with Jessie Buckley which will play in the Special Screening section, and “God’s Creatures,” a psychological thriller directed by Saela Davis and Anna Rose Holmer, the filmmaking duo who made their feature debut with the Sundance film “The Fits.” Set in an Irish fishing village, “God’s Creatures” stars Aisling Franciosi, Emily Watson and Paul Mescal. Other elevated genre films on the roster include British helmer Mark Jenkin’s anticipated “Enys Men.”
Directors’ Fortnight will showcase films by 11 female directors and eight feature debuts. By comparison, Cannes Film Festival’s competition currently has only three films helmed by women.
Several French female helmers who were expected to feature in the Official Selection will have their movies world premiere in Directors’ Fortnight, for instance Lea Mysius (“The Five Devils”), Mia Hansen-Love (“One Fine Morning”), Alice Winocour (“Paris Memories”).
“One Fine Morning” is headlined by Lea Seydoux, Melvil Poupaud and Nicole Garcia. The film revolves around a young single mother who is looking after her ill father and starts an affair with a friend despite the fact that he’s already in a relationship.
“Paris Memories” stars Virginie Efira (this year’s Cannes Film Festival’s emcee) as a survivor of the Paris attacks of November 2015 who embarks on a quest to find happiness again. Benoît Magimel (“Living”) also stars.
“The Five Devils,” meanwhile, is an ambitious sophomore feature from Mysius, who previously directed “Ava” and co-wrote Jacques Audiard’s “Paris, 13th District.” Weaving fantasy elements, the movie stars Adèle Exarchopoulos and follows a young woman, Vicky, who lives with her parents and welcomes back her aunt after her release from prison. Her presence brings back the past in a violent, magical way.
Other female-directed movies slated for Directors’ Fortnight include Manuela Martelli’s Chilean period drama “1976” and Annie Ernaux and David Ernaux-Briot’s intimate documentary feature “The Super 8 Years,” Charlotte Le Bon’s Canadian coming-of-age tale “Falcon Lake” and Elena López Riera’s summer-set Spanish feature “The Water.”
Moretti said during the press conference held in Paris on Tuesday that one Asian film – one Chinese movie — will be added at a latter stage.
Commenting on the higher-than-usual presence of female directors in the lineup, Moretti said the sidebar “aspires to represent the diversity of world cinema.” He also pointed out the roster showcased many French movies due to the fact that so many were submitted.
“French cinema is very present because it’s the major country that submit films so we’ll celebrate this vitality,” added Moretti.
Directors’ Fortnight will close with Nicolas Pariser’s “Le Parfum Vert,” an ambitious adventure film with Sandrine Kiberlain and Vincent Lacoste. As previously announced, Pietro Marcello’s French-language period drama “Scarlet” will open the sidebar on May 18.
Here is the full lineup:
“Scarlet,” Pietro Marcello (Opening Film)
“1976,” Manuela Martelli
“The Dam,” Ali Cherri
“The Super 8 Years,” Annie Ernaux, David Ernaux-Briot
“Ashkal,” Youssef Chebbi
“The Five Devils,” Léa Mysius
“De Humani Corporis Fabrica,” Véréna Paravel, Lucien Castaing-Taylor
“Continental Drift (South),” Lionel Baier
“The Water,” Elena López Riera
“Enys Men,” Mark Jenkin
“Falcon Lake,” Charlotte Le Bon
“Will-o’-the-Wisp,” João Pedro Rodrigues
“Funny Pages,” Owen Kline
“God’s Creatures,” Anna Rose Holmer, Saela Davis
“Harkis,” Philippe Faucon
“Men,” Alex Garland (Special Screening)
“The Mountain,” Thomas Salvador
“Pamfir,” Dmytro Sukholytkyy-Sobchuk
“Paris Memories, Alice Winocour
“Under the Fig Trees,” Erige Sehiri
“One Fine Morning,” Mia Hansen-Løve
“A Male,” Fabian Hernández
“The Green Perfume,” Nicolas Pariser (Closing Film)