Cow: Andrea Arnold’s New Film, at 2021 Cannes Film Fest

Cow, the new film from iconic British director Andrea Arnold (American Honey, Fish Tank), will world premiere at the 2021 Cannes Film Fest.

The tale describes the daily lives of two cows.

Her previous (fourth) film, American Honey, revolves around a group of youngster traveling across the country selling magazine subscriptions.

The thin, meandering plot focuses on the journey of the mag-crew kids as they drink, smoke, dance, joke around, and have various conversations in their van.

The film had its world premiere and competed for Palme d’Or at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival, where it won her third Jury Prize. The film features a mix of both professional and non-actors, with all the non-actors being found through construction sites, parking lots, and on beaches. Out of the 15 youth actors cast, 11 had never acted before. The lead Sasha Lane was spotted by Arnold on a beach during spring break.

Arnold shot the film in chronological sequence, not telling her actors where they were going next. The film was released in the US on September 30, 2016, by A24 and Focus Features.

Arnold has been very active in working with film festivals around the world–she is a festival regular even between films. In 2012 she was a member of the Jury for the Main Competition at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival. In 2013 she was named as a member of the jury at the 70th Venice International Film Festival.

In 2014 Arnold was announced as the chair of the jury for International Critics’ Week at the 2014 Cannes Film Festival.

In 2016, Arnold was chosen to take part in a public conversation about her career as part of the Tribeca Film Festival’s “Tribeca Talks” program. Arnold was a jury member of the 2017 Sheffield Doc/Fest.

In September 2013, Arnold was named the New York Film Festival’s inaugural “Filmmaker in Residence.” As the first “Filmmaker in Residence,” Arnold was responsible for “creating a template for the program.” The program is designed to “further the goals of filmmakers at an earlier stage in the creative process.”

Through the program, Arnold was given the “opportunity to focus on developing or refining new work, and participate in master classes, mentorships or cultural exchange and enrichment film program with the Film Society of Lincoln Center members, the film community and the public.”

Andrea Arnold was named to as Chair of the European Film Festival of Les Arcs, which ran from 16 to 23 December 2017.

Arnold is known for giving her actors almost total control in creating their characters. Her directorial style provides support and reassurance to her actors in an effort to create their most pure reflections of themselves. Sasha Lane, star of American Honey, describes that “She constantly told me to be who I was. There wasn’t really any teaching. More like, ‘Sasha, you’re fine.'”

Arnold’s films are characterized by the themes of deprivation and impoverishment. For example, both Fish Tank and Wuthering Heights are dramas featuring teenagers living in the poverty-stricken English edge-lands.

In 2012, Arnold embarked on an impulsive road-trip of the continental United States which she states partially inspired the premise of her 2016 feature American Honey.