Black directors direct only 1% of competition films at large parties, according to new research

Screen International offers a brutal reminder of how far the film industry has not yet gone on the road to inclusivity. The film magazine and blog examined the most important international competitions for the 14 A-category festivals that held an edition in 2018, 2019 and 2021 (taking into account the fact that many did not take place in 2020 due to COVID-19), and the results paint a damning picture: In 2018, only two of 236 directors (0.85 percent) working on the competition films were black; with that figure of two out of 233 (0.86 percent) in 2019 and six out of 242 (2.48 percent) in 2021. Overall, that equates to 10 out of 711 directors, or 1.4 percent.

“No Black director has performed twice in the main competition at any of the festivals across this time,” Screen Daily reports. “Nine of the 14 A-Class festivals have not programmed any Black instructors in their main competition section over the past three years.” Venice and the Berlinale are among the festivities that showed zero films of black directors in the main competition over the three years.

Mati Diop is one of the few black instructors whose work was shown in a main competition. She made history as the first black woman to have a film in Cannes’ main competition with “Atlantics”, her debut film.

Screen Daily also examined the representation of women, Arab and Asian instructors in the main competitions at large parties. “The number of films directed by women in the main competition at the major festivals has increased during these three years, from 41 in 2018 (18.14%) to 48 in 2019 (21.52%) and 56 in 2021 (25.34). %), “source details. “For Arab directors, the number of films has increased slightly, from 16 in 2018 (7.08%) to 17 in 2019 (7.62%) and 19 in 2021 (8.60%). For Asian instructors, in 2018 there were 37 titles (16.37%) with a marked increase in 2019 to 47 (21.08%) and a decrease for 2021 to 38 (17.19%).

For more details on the survey, head over to Screen Daily.

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