Women Climb for Times Up at Cannes Film Festival 2018

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Women Climb for Times Up at Cannes Film Festival 2018

Times Up at Cannes Film Festival 2018, where 82 women protested the gender inequality that pervades the film industry. Cate Blanchett and Agnes Varda served as the protest’s fearless leaders, empowering females in the industry to fight for a change.

Time's Up, #TimesUp, Women Empowerment, Women Empowering Women, Gender Equality, #TIMESUP, Cannes Film Festival, Cannes Film Festival 2018 Photo via @thatsnotloveumd

In 2017, Cannes Film Festival celebrated its 70thanniversary, modifying the famous bumper that eminently runs before every film, showcasing a set of red stairs, and emulating the world’s most esteemed red carpet outside the Palais des Festivals. The bumper displayed the last names of respected directors whose magnificent works had been programmed throughout the festival’s seven, notable decades.  As days passed and names rotated through, it became obvious that the majority of names presented on the legendary bumper were predominately male, with very few female directors recognized. However, we saw that a lot can happen in a year… Following the infamous Harvey Weinstein bombshell and shocking revelations regarding powerful men in the industry, the conversation about women in the film business seems to have finally swayed. More action has been taken to create safe work environments, equal pay, and equal opportunity for women within Hollywood and across the globe.
This action was definitely portrayed at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, a place so entwined in its own conventions that wearing anything other than Stilettos on the red carpet is breaking news. In such a traditionalistic atmosphere, it came as a pleasant surprise when women called out Cannes’ notorious gender imbalance throughout its 71-year saga on the red carpet.
Prior to the premiere of Eva Husson’s Girl of the Sun, 82 admirable women marched valiantly up the red carpet, stood stoically on the steps, locked arms, and turned away from the Palais des Festivals to face the vast crowd. These 82 women stood as an ode to the 82 films directed by females that have premiered in competition at Cannes, contrasting the 1,645 films directed by males.

5050x2020, Time's Up, #TIMESUP, #TimesUp, Gender Equality, Film Industry Gender Inequality, Women Empowerment, Women Empowering Women Photo via @5050×2020

The protest was organized by 5050×2020, a French Movement that is calling for 50/50 gender equality in the French film industry by the year 2020. Among the group of women were representatives from feminist and industry pro-equality movements, actresses, and filmmakers. Cannes jury member Kristen Stewart, Wonder Woman Director Patty Jenkins, Marion Cotillard, Ava DuVernay, Léa Seydoux, and Khadja Nin were a mere handful of inspiring women that stood in honor of women everywhere, suffering from this blatant lack of equality.

Cate Blanchett, Cannes, Cannes Film Festival, Cannes Film Festival 2018, Time's Up, #TIMESUP, #TimesUp, Women Empowerment, Women Empowering Women, Female Leaders, Females in the Film Industry, Film Industry Gender Inequality, Protesting Gender Inequality Photo via @maisquecinema

Once on the steps, the determined women delivered a powerful statement. Renowned actress Cate Blanchett read the English version, and the legendary Palme d’Or winning director, Agnes Varda, delivered the French version.

Women are not a minority in the world, yet the current state of our industry says otherwise. We expect our institutions to actively provide parity and transparency in their executive bodies and provide safe environments in which to work. We expect our governments to make sure that the laws of equal pay for equal work are upheld. We demand that our workplaces are diverse and equitable so that they can best reflect the world in which we actually live. A world that allows all of us in front and behind the camera, all of us, to thrive shoulder to shoulder with our male colleagues. -Cate Blanchett and Agnes Varda

After the women’s peaceful protest, they proceeded into the Girls of the Sun premiere. The film tells the true story of female anti-extremist Kurdish soldiers. This moving narrative recalls the 7,000 women and girls captured from their homes and sold into sexual slavery by extremists in 2014. Their eventual escape resulted in the women taking their country back, exclaiming “Women! Life! Liberty!” Although we cannot compare what these women endured to the women on the red carpet, the recent Times Up Movement makes this moment fitting, empowering women to share their stories, experiences, and struggles in order to ignite change.

Let's Climb, Climb for gender equality, Climb for Time's Up, 5050x2020, Time's Up, #TIMESUP, #TimesUp, Gender Equality, Film Industry Gender Inequality, Women Empowerment, Women Empowering Women Photo via @5050×2020

This week, Cannes plans to further the discussion of women’s equality in the film industry. Events include a conference with elite representatives from women’s organizations in the United States and Europe, several Cannes directors, and France’s culture minister. Panels and talks will be held regarding the subject matter, held by various organizations and countries cultural envoys.
 
For more information about Cannes Film Festival 2018, explore here

Be inspired by more empowered women at Love Happens!

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