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Cannes 2018: A No-Nonsense Cate Blanchett Fields Tough Questions

Cannes 2018: A No-Nonsense Cate Blanchett Fields Tough Questions

Most wanted to know, through variously framed questions, how the Cannes film festival would change things, how it was responding to the culture of ignoring talented women in the film industry, and whether, while deciding who to hand over this year's Palme d'Or to, it will be taking affirmative action.

Twilight's Kristen Stewart, Burundian songwriter Khadja Nin and French actress Lea Seydoux are among the other members of this year's jury. With so many films by the world's well known filmmakers still at works when the Berlinale announced their selections in January this year, there were wild speculations as to how many of these films will Cannes screen this year.

Weinstein is accused of attacking four actresses at Cannes, including the rape of the Italian actress Asia Argento in his luxury hotel suite when she was 21.

But before that, we will see Cannes regular Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, attracting spotlight with her appearance at the French Riviera on the May 12 and 13.

When a reporter wondered whether this year's jury was the most female-centric in the festival's history, Blanchett immediately responded, "No".

Morning press shows ahead of Competition films several hours ahead of their red-carpet galas have been done away with while protracted post-screening embargoes have been imposed on reviews of films that screen late night.

But it is Cannes' "dismal" record on female directors, and Saturday's red carpet protest led by A-list stars, which may generate the most political heat.

At a press conference before the festival's official opening, she also stressed that a director's gender would have no bearing on how she and her fellow jurors assessed their films.




Blanchett, a prominent member of the Time's Up initiative, said the #MeToo movement - aimed at eradicating sexual harassment - will play a role at the festival and every one from now on. Absolutely. Do I expect and hope that is going to happen in the future?

The new "Star Wars" spin-off, "Solo", is the only Hollywood blockbuster in a slightly less starry line-up than usual.

He also regretted not being able to programme Alfonso Cuaron's film "Roma", about the director's growing-up years in Mexico.

This year, Cannes has established a hotline for sexual harassment victims at the festival.

"It isn't just the Cannes Film Festival that's going to change", he said Tuesday. "It has been irritating to me to think that I'm in Cannes because I'm a woman filmmaker and that now, with everything that's happening, the world has chose to put females in the spotlight".

Also likely absent from Cannes will be two filmmakers living under house arrest in their home countries. "You don't come to Cannes to see yourself, you come to Cannes to see films".

Another Iranian with a movie in competition, Jafar Panahi, will be unable to attend the festival as he is officially banned from film-making by his government.

Saudi Arabia's first cinema in almost 35 years was open by United States movie theater giant America Multi Cinema (AMC) Entertainment in Riyadh on April 18.

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