More candidates and fewer selected, issues of identity and intimacy, movie-makers who are mobile and who put themselves in danger. These are some of the main trends of the 2013 vintage.
This year the Festival de Cannes teams have watched 1,858 full-length feature films and 5,053 short films. No less. The numbers show strong growth but the selection remains contained, even tighter as compared to 2012.
The Official Selection 2013 thus totals 53 full-length movies (against 61 last year), 20 of which are In Competition, 18 are in Un Certain Regard and 15 are Out of Competition. In addition, 27 short movies have been selected: 9 in Competition and 18 for the Cinéfondation (film school movies).
Though only one female director is in contention for the Palme d’or, a total of 11 movies by women figure in the Official Selection, including 4 first films. 11 candidates are in selection for the Caméra d’or, derived from the Official Selection, 6 of whom are in Un Certain Regard, which stays faithful to its role of trail-blazer.
According to Thierry Frémaux, the films of this 66th Festival evoke identity, commitment and the intimate lives of individuals and tell us "how the fragilities of life build the human beings that we are".
Though US and French films dominate the selection, other parts of the world bear witness to tremendous vitality, including Mexico, the Philippines or Palestine, with a movie screening in Un Certain Regard and, for the very first time, a short film In Competition. Using the standard criterion of production, twenty eight countries are represented, but it is increasingly difficult to determine the nationality of movies as more and more movie-makers travel, migrate, cross borders and shoot in languages other than their own. As demonstrated this year by the films of Asghar Farhadi, Arnaud Desplechin or Nicolas Winding Refn, all three in the running for the Palme d’or.
Béatrice de Mondenard