This weekend, a group of women made their voices heard as they protested on the Cannes Film Festival red carpet. The 82-strong army was led by Cate Blanchett and featured Ava DuVernay, Kristen Stewart, Salma Hayek and Marion Cotillard, among others.
The number 82 is by no means random: it’s meant to represent the 82 female directors whose films have had showings at Cannes since its inception in 1946. How many male directors have had their films screened? Oh, just a humble 1 688.
“Women are not a minority in the world, yet the current state of our industry says otherwise,” Blanchett and French director Agnès Varda said in English and French speeches in support of equal pay, safer work environments and diversity.
“As women, we all face our own unique challenges, but we stand together on these stairs today as a symbol of our determination and commitment to progress,” they continued. “We are writers, producers, directors, actresses, cinematographers, talent agents, editors, distributors, sales agents and all involved in the cinematic arts.”
Rifumo Mdaka is a Johannesburg-based music writer who champions South African queer artists. When I’m bored, I watch iPhone keynotes and commercials. Read my website FDBQ Music and follow me on Twitter @rifvmo