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"We will assess them as filmmakers, as we should".

Thierry's efforts to make the film festival more gender inclusive include improving the male-to-female ratios on selection committees, installing more women into the role of jury president, and selecting more films directed by women for competition.

The two-time Oscar victor also gave short shrift to a journalist who suggested the festival's traditions of glitz and glamour were at odds with the current mood. "I hope so", she said.

Twilight's Kristen Stewart, Burundian songwriter Khadja Nin and French actress Lea Seydoux are among the other members of this year's jury. I am humbled by the privilege and responsibility of presiding over this year's jury.

Asked about the festival's emphasis on gorgeous actresses and red-carpet glamour-which seems incongruous with the current cultural reckoning-Blanchett said, "Being attractive doesn't preclude being intelligent". That may be the case, and the festival may very well do similar.

On Saturday evening, when about 100 top actresses and female film directors will stage a protest on the red carpet at the Cannes film festival to support the #MeToo movement against sexual harassment, it'll do so with the support of the Cannes Film Festival.

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I hope we get a chance to tell him the risk that he's taking. "So he's saying he didn't know about it when the payment occurred.

DuVernay, the filmmaker of "Selma" and the Netflix documentary "13th", said that the power of movies is the ability to "speak to each other through cinema". "It's the way that I, from where I'm from - Compton, California - was able to understand the humanity of a family in Iran or in Shanghai. It has been irritating to me to think that I'm in Cannes because I'm a woman filmmaker and that now, with everything that's happening, the world has chose to put females in the spotlight". "It was film that allows me to assert my voice in the world". In the following days, Lors Von Trier and Nuri Bilge Ceylan appeared on the list leaving Paolo Sorrentino, Mike Leigh, Naomi Kawase and Xavier Dolan to festivals after Cannes.

On the question of two filmmakers in the contest being under house arrest, Ms. Blanchett said though Cannes was not "political", it does open eyes and hearts to things around the world. Several Netflix titles, including Alfonso Cuaron's "Roma" and the recently completed Orson Welles film "The Other Side of the Wind", had been expected to premiere this year.

Iranian Jafar Panahi, whose 3 Faces is in competition, and Russian director Kirill Serebrennikov's film Leto (or Summer), are critics of their government and will not be present to accept the award if it goes to them.

Saudi Arabia's first cinema in almost 35 years was open by United States movie theater giant America Multi Cinema (AMC) Entertainment in Riyadh on April 18. Sergei Loznitsa, another big name in the global film scene leads the Un Certain Regard section where Nandita Das' MANTO will also be screened. His film - "The House That Jack Built" - stars Matt Dillon and Uma Thurman.

The new "Star Wars" spin-off, "Solo", is the only Hollywood blockbuster in a slightly less starry line-up than usual.