Vivian Qu is the only woman competing in Venice

Alexia Muiños Ruiz
Alexia Muiños Ruiz

Vivian Qu is the only woman director competing for the Golden Lion in Venice


© Angels wear white (c) 22 Hours Films.

© Angels wear white (c) 22 Hours Films.

Venice Film Festival is kicking off awards season. Although the Festival Artistic Director, Alberto Barbera is “97% satisfied” with their line-up, we are truly missing films directed by women.

Over the past few years, Venice succeeded by opening with major Oscar winners and contenders such as Gravity, Birdman, Spotlight, La La Land. Acknowledging their fine eye, we must complain however about the shortage of women-directed films in the official competition.

The festival will open with Alexander Payne’s "Downsizing" and will screen in competition Guillermo del Toro, George Clooney, Darren Aronofsky, Paul Schrader, Kore-Eda, Wiseman, Abdellatif Kechiche and Martin McDonagh among others. Unfortunately, Angels Wear White by Vivian Qu is the only film directed by a woman in the official competition.

Lucretia Martel’s Zama or Antonietta De Lillo’s Il Singor Rotpeter will be screened out of competition.

The Documentaries and Special Events screenings are also lacking women directors. Only at Horizons and Venice Days can we have the chance to watch some women’s works.

HORIZONS: 4.5 films out of 19, are directed/co-directed by a woman
Nico 1988, dir: Susanna Nicchiarelli (opening film)
The Rape Of Recy Taylor, dir: Nancy Buirski
Caniba, dirs: Lucien Castaing-Taylor, Verena Paravel
Les Bienheureux, dir: Sofia Djama
Marvin, dir: Anne Fontaine

VENICE DAYS COMPETITION: 4 out of 12 films are directed by women

Where Shadows Fall, Valentina Pedicini,
Life Guidance, Ruth Mader,
Looking for Oum Kulthum, Shirin Neshat,
M, Sara Forestier

Venice Days will also screen the 3 finalists of the LUX PRIZE , 2 of which are again directed by women:
SÁMI BLOOD, by Amanda Kernell – Sweden, Norway, Denmark
WESTERN, by Valeska Grisebach – Germany, Bulgaria, Austria