FRED Film Radio and the 73rd Cannes Film Festival.
The Festival de Cannes is the largest film event in the world. It aims to draw attention to and raise the profile of films and, in doing so, contribute to the development of cinema and boost the film industry internationally. For twelve days each year, it attracts thousands of professionals and film enthusiasts from all over the world, who come to celebrate the cinema in a unique setting buzzing with cultural and artistic energy. In the midst of this privileged environment of discovery and vibrant mix of cultures, the Official Selection is revealed, which culminates in the award of the Palme d’Or to the best film entry during the Closing Ceremony.
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Due to the global pandemic, the Cannes Film Festival will not take place this year under its usual conditions, nor on the dates it was scheduled: May 12th to 23rd, 2020. On March 19, the Festival was postponed to the beginning of July. With Pierre Lescure, the Président of Cannes, we had until April 15 to make a decision. But on April 13, French public authorities announced that no major cultural event could take place during the summer. September being traditionally the time of Venice and Toronto festivals, it was out of the question that we would hold our festival in September. As for organizing Cannes later, in October or November, after all the fall festivals, that was just not possible either. However, cancelation has never been an option. As you probably know, the Festival was canceled only once, in 1939. And only one other edition did not go to completion, it was in 1968. In 2020, if the International Film Festival (the FIF as locals like to call it) could not take its usual form, it was necessary for it to take another form. It could not just disappear.
In the 2020 Official Selection we have 15 first films (26.7% of the total), compared to 10 in 2019 (17%). We have never had this many first time filmmakers in the Official Selection. It comes to prove the vitality of cinema. It’s also a proof of the Festival’s commitment to the future of cinema.
It was also because of the filmmaker’s hard work that we didn’t want to give up. We couldn’t send everyone to 2021. So, we continued our selection. And it was the right decision. By choosing to work until the end to establish a selection, we received more than 2000 feature films, 2067 to be precise.
Another growing figure is the constant geographic expansion of the film’s countries of origin. In 2020, the films came from 147 countries, compared to138 in 2019, an increase of 6.5%.
Regarding the presence of female directors, the Cannes Film Festival has made a commitment to “Collectif 50/50” to provide statistical information on the presence of female directors.