Cannes 2014: Jane Campion says sexism keeps women out of film industry

By Daniel S Levine,

While speaking with the media on the opening day of the 2014 Cannes International Film Festival, jury president Jane Campion spoke against sexism in the industry, which she says keeps women from directing major films.

The New Zealander remains the only woman to direct a film that won the Palme D’Or when her The Piano won acclaim in 1993. During the press conference, Campion said that sexism is behind the lack of women behind the camera in the industry.

“I think you'd have to say there's some inherent sexism in the industry,” Campion said, notes Reuters. “It does feel very undemocratic and women do notice. Time and time again, we don't get our share of representation.”

Campion is actually leading a jury that’s made mostly of women, including Sofia Coppola, Jeon Do-Yeon, Carole Bouquet and Leila Hatami. However, there are only two films by women directors that are eligible for the Palme D’Or this year - Alice Rohrwacher’s The Wonders and Naomi Kawase’s Still the Waters.

Campion does have a point that women are embarrassingly underrepresented behind the camera. In January, a San Diego State University study showed that only 16 percent of producers, writers, editors and cinematographers were women in 2013. Just 6 percent of the most successful films in 2013 were directed by women.

The Cannes festival wraps on May 25.



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