In 1993, Jane Campion became the first female director to receive the Palme d'Or for The Piano Lesson. It took 28 years for the Lumière auditorium to see another woman walk in its footsteps: Julia Ducournau for the gore and metalhead fable Titane. To discover the third woman, and second French filmmaker, to receive such an honor, two years fortunately will have been enough. With Anatomy of a Fall, Justine Triet enters this still small pantheon and confirms the slow movement towards equality in a film industry, historically dominated by men.
Justine Triet, who strongly denounced in her acceptance speech the way the French government has "shockingly denied" the movement against the pension reform, reaches the top of the cinema after four films and as many portraits of women.
See alsoAnatomy of a fall by Justine Triet, a bold palme d'or
This new coronation of a young French director also testifies to the success of French achievements in international festivals, with the Golden Lion awarded to Audrey Diwan in 2021 in Venice for L'événement and the Golden Bear in February to Nicolas Philibert for his documentary Sur l'adamant.
The jury, chaired by Ruben Östlund and which also included Julia Ducournau, chose Anatomy of a Fall, which tells the story of the trial of a widow (Sandra Hüller) accused at the assizes of having killed her husband. The opportunity to dissect the power dynamics within a couple of wealthy artists and to expose the social prejudices faced by independent women.
Justine Triet on her way to the Oscars?
Anatomy of a Fall was acquired for the United States for the distributor Neon who praised the South Korean Palme d'Or Parasite at the Oscars. With such support, Justine Triet will have to prepare to participate in the Hollywood awards season and should find on this circuit The Zone Of Interest by British Jonathan Glazer on the life of a Nazi commander settling near Auschwitz.
Regularly put on the spot for his lack of parity between director and director in the official competition, the artistic director Thierry Frémaux and his selection committee had for this 76th edition retained the record number of seven female directors out of twenty-one contenders for the Palme d'Or.
Justine Triet is not the only director to do well in this 2023 vintage. Britain's Molly Manning Walker received the Un Certain Regard award for How To Have Sex, and two other filmmakers share the Golden Eye for Best Documentary, Kadib Abyad (The Mother of All Lies) and Kaouther Ben Hania (Olfa's Daughters, about the radicalization of Tunisian teenage girls).