Cannes Jury Press Conference Was All About #MeToo

CANNES –The #MeToo movement took center stage at the Cannes Jury press conference. 
This year's jury is composed of five women (President Cate Blanchett, Ava Duvernay, Kristen Stewart, Léa Seydoux, and Khadja Nin) and four men (Denis Villeneuve, Chang Chen, and Andrey Zvyagintsev.)
Of course, the most recurrent questions were related to what was happening right now in the industry, movements such as #TimesUp and #MeToo, which had me starting to grow impatient, especially considering nothing new was said and barely any movie-related questions were asked. This is a film festival I am attending, right?
At some point Blanchett answered a question by saying “Being attractive doesn’t preclude being intelligent.” Someone shoot me now.
She went on to add: “This is by its very nature a glamorous, fantastic, spectacular festival.  Full of joie de vivre.  Full of great good humor.  Full of discord and disharmony.  Making art, making work is not always going to be harmonious.  We are not always going to be in concord and agreement. The world would be terribly boring if it was. I think those aspects of the festival are things to be enjoyed but in an equal fair and equitable way.”
As for the festival being politicized, at least the actress more or less, agreed with my own sentiments about the weapon of politicization and art:
“I think it’s not a political film festival and I think making the work is often inherently political and how it is going to be digested and disseminated post the festival may well have political implications for people and open their minds and hearts to situations going on around the world.”   
“As Ava was saying, forming bridges and family situations or love relationships or the trials and tribulations of people you can relate to whether you lived in Compton or grew up in East Ivanhoe in Australia as I did.  But this is not the Nobel peace prize, it’s the Palme d’or.  It’s a slightly different function.  But, yes, it’s a terrible situation that two of the filmmakers will more than likely not be here when their films screen. It’s a very, very terrible situation.”
The two directors she refers to are Jafar Panahi, director of “Three Flowers,” who has been making movies the last 8 or so years, despite a twenty-year media and travel ban imposed on him in 2010.  Kirill Serebrennikov, director of “Summer,”is under house arrest until October for bogus fraud charges which stink of Putin dictating. 
An interesting thought from DuVernay:

“I feel like cinema is this voice and it’s the way that where I’m from, Compton, California, was able to understand the humanity of a family in Iran or in Shanghai,” DuVernay says. “There was nothing outside of my window to orient me to my place in the world. It’s film that brought me that. It’s film that allows me to assert my voice. I feel Cannes is so important because it brings us together from all points of the world from wherever we are to assert our voices to assert ourselves so our voice actually speak to each other in cinema. It’s so important I feel that we are inclusive in the ways we participate in film, whether that’s in a theater or not. It’s still film. I think this is a question that the industry and artists and executives alike are grappling with. What is a film? A film is a story told by a filmmaker and the way in which that film is presented to the audience I don’t think has a bearing of whether or not it’s a film. I look forward to having those debates with my fellow jury members, like the ones sitting next to me and others.”
The 71st Cannes Film Festival is on until May 19th.