Cannes Film Fest 2016: Women in Minority in Competition but Dominate Shorts

Just three films out of 20, or 15 percent, in competition for the 2016 Palm d’Or were directed by women: American Honey by Andrea Arnold, Mal de Pierres by Nicole Garcia and Maren Ade’s Toni Erdman,

That said, this figure is a step up from last year, when there were just two (although the fest opened with Emmanuelle Bercot’s Standing Tall), but it’s a fall from 2012 when four female directors made the cut, still a Cannes record.

The Un Certain Regard section, Cannes’ main sidebar, fares better. Four films (about 25 percent) — La Danseuse, Voir Du Pays, Omar Shakhsiya and La Large Noche de Francisco Sanctis — come from distaff directors out of 17 slots announced so far.

 Out of competition, helmer Jodie Foster is the solitary femme figure with Money Monster.

As a potentially highly positive sign of things to come, however, in Cannes’ Student Shorts section this year, more than half the films were directed by women.