2021, the year of film directors

Julia Ducornau, Chloé Zhao and Audrey Diwan (Photo: GETTY)

The Venice Film Festival has ended with a record that has not only elevated Penélope Cruz, but has also distinguished a handful of talented women.

While the Madrilenian won the Volpi Cup – the award for the best actress of the contest – for her role in Parallel Mothers, the Golden Lion went to Audrey Diwan’s The Event. The French director won the festival’s highest award with a film about clandestine abortion in France.

The award for best screenplay, meanwhile, went to Maggie Gyllenhaal for The Lost Daughter, a film she also directs. The filmmaker could not beat Jane Campion, who was crowned the best director of the contest thanks to The Power of the Dog. Campion was, in 1993, the first woman to win the Palme d’Or at Cannes for The Piano.

It took 28 years for the jury of the French festival to award another woman with its highest distinction. In this year’s edition, held in July, the winner of the Palme d’Or was Titane, described by The Guardian as the “most shocking film of the year” and directed by Julia Ducournau.

The year started well for women filmmakers with Chloé Zhao’s victory at the Golden Globes, which she repeated at the Oscars, crowning herself as the second woman to win the Best Direction award at the most important film awards. He did it thanks to his adaptation of Nomadland and his triumph has made him prepare new projects, both independent and Marvel blockbusters.

The predictions for the Oscars in 2022, in full swing after the premieres of many of the films that will compete for the statuette, suggest that Campion could make history again. The reputed magazine Variety includes her in its quintet of nominees, making her the first filmmaker to be nominated twice for Best Director. To win the award, he would have to fight, among others, with Pedro Almodóvar.

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In Spain, the best film according to the Goya, The Girls, is also signed by a director, Pilar Palomero. The Zaragoza also won the award for the best new direction at the gala that was held last March.

The filmmakers claim, little by little, their rightful place in movie theaters and in statuettes. A place that shouldn’t be news, but is still a milestone in a male-dominated industry.

This article originally appeared on The HuffPost and has been updated.


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