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Cannes Organizers Promises to Improve Gender Equality

The Cannes Film Festival’s director has pledged a gender equality pledge promising to make their selection process more transparent based on the heels of a red-carpet protest on Monday.

Their signatures hit the page just two days after 82 female film industry figures staged a red-carpet protest, led by the Cannes festival’s jury president, actress Cate Blanchett at the world-famous French film festival, demanding an end to gender imbalance in the film industry.

“The world is no longer the same. We must examine our own practices, our habits and our history,” said festival head Thierry Fremaux, who has faced criticism for the annual event’s inclusion of an abysmally low number of female-directed movies.

The pledge was drawn up by the French gender-parity group 50/50 by 2020, which brought in other groups including Time’s Up. The same international coalition was behind Saturday’s rally on the red carpet steps of Cannes’ Palais des Festivales.

“Women are not a minority in the world, and yet our industry says the opposite,” Blanchett said from the top of the Palais steps, alongside French filmmaker Agnes Varda.

Other film festivals have more aggressively pursued gender parity, including the Tribeca Film Festival, which touted its percentage of female filmmakers 46 per cent last month.

> Shatabdi Sarker Poushi

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