Cannes 2014 has been a particularly fruitful and successful time for the EWA Network. During last year’s Festival, EWA had the privilege of meeting the legendary Jane Campion, to discuss women’s undervalued presence in the film industry and how to change this. On this year’s 67th Cannes Film Festival, EWA had the absolute pleasure to see that Ms Campion was selected as head of the Jury and promoted all throughout the celebrated Festival, EWA’s same vision and goals.
One of this year’s biggest achievements and highlights is EWA’s Vice-President Ms Zeynep ÖZbatur Atakan, who produced the film “Winter Sleep”, directed by Nuri Bilge Ceylan, which has won the Palme d’Or. Ms Zeynep Özbatur Atakan is an acclaimed and award-winning Turkish film producer who is Head of the Turkish Producer’s Association and who is strongly committed to promoting and supporting women in the film industry. EWA was also thrilled that Alice Rohrwacher received the “Grand Prix du Jury” for “The wonders” and that Xavier Dolan on receiving his Jury Prize award for “Mommy” was so gracious in mentioning the importance of Jane Campion’s strong female characters and how this had affected his own filmmaking.
We should mention also the European Audiovisual Observatory’s event "Girls just want to have films", which allowed for a presentation of recent research on women in film in Europe carried out by the Observatory as well as a panel discussion on measures for improving gender equality in film, moderated by Susan Newman from Eurimages and a founding member of the EWA Network.
Once again, EWA’s Networking Happy Hour Event, held in collaboration with the Croatian Audiovisual Centre on Monday May 19 2014, was a major success – topped with many creative ideas and wishes to expand the EWA Network around toasts, wine and crémant d’alsace. The event was attended by more than 200 people – men and women from throughout the audiovisual industry - including representatives from many film funds. There were producers, directors, scriptwriters, agents, representatives from networks and festivals including Maxine Williamson, from the Asia Pacific Screen Awards. EWA is immensely pleased to have brought together so many talented people in one of Cannes’s beach pavilions at such a busy time in the Festival’s calendar.
As mentioned the event was once more jointly organized with the Croatian Audiovisual Centre (HAVC) to whom EWA extends their deepest thanks for their help, hospitality and support, in particular to its Director Hrvoje Hribar and his team, especially Katarina Prpić (Department of Promotion); also to Sanja Ravlic (National representative to Eurimages). The event would also not have been possible without the organizational direction and help of EWA Team, that is Executive Director Francine Raveney, Deputy Director and Web Manager Alexia Muiños Ruiz, Training Project Manager Aurélie Grenet and Communication Officer Sarah Hurtes.
What’s more, EWA Team also met with numerous professionals during the festival including representatives from the national film funds of Croatia, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain and the UK, contacts in Albania, where we are planning to host our next session of Pitcher Perfect in November this year, as well as a meeting with Jan Miller and Michael Hennesy (Canada Media Production Association) about possible collaborations with Canada. In view of future collaborations EWA met with Joyce Pierpoline from the Producer’s Guild of America, Andrea Pollach – Manager of FC Gloria in Austria, Helene Granquist from Women in Film and TV Sweden and the Deuxième Regard team from Paris.
We also had the absolute pleasure of interviewing some of our members on their cinematographic vision. This includes talking to Dr Nurdan Tümbek Tekeoğlu, renowned Turkish film producer; and Beryl Richards, acclaimed British Film Director – both of whom are award-wining professionals in the audiovisual sector. All in all, EWA’s presence in Cannes has been immensely productive as well as rewarding with high ambitions for the next coming year.
Yet all this great fun and hard work does not stop at Cannes’ sparkling Film Festival, as EWA has concocted many more events for all its members and wishing participants to enjoy. Here below is a list of all the up- coming events on EWA’s buzzing calendar:
- MasterClass during this year’s Venice Film Festival in September (to be confirmed);
- in late September, again in Italy, we will be hosting a scriptwriter’s retreat in the village of Cetona with some exciting surprises already being planned - the course will be open for applications end June;
- during the Valladolid film festival we hope to organize a panel event involving our Vice-President Isabel Castro (Eurimages Deputy Executive Director), our Executive President Isabel de Ocampo, Francine Raveney (Executive Director of EWA) and Ms Zeynep Özbatur Atakan, EWA’s Vice-President;
- in Tirana in November we look forward to welcoming selected candidates for another round of the highly successful Pitcher Perfect training course; and
- funding permitting we intend to host workshop one of our new training cycle, organized in conjunction with Distrify, in Glasgow in December of this year – the focus of this first workshop will be on crowd-funding and viral marketing.
EWA will also be announcing a new exciting on-line opportunity in the near future…which will be open for all its members shortly and which should help ensure women’s presence in the industry and increased visibility. We will also be keeping you informed about the ongoing research initiative “Where are the women in film in Europe? – Data mapping report across 5 countries with best practice recommendations”.