A Woman on the Croisette: Julie Bertuccelli’s Film The Tree to Close Cannes

by Melissa Silverstein on April 30, 2010

in Festivals,Women Directors,Women Writers

The Cannes Film Festival has woken up from it’s ridiculousness — they still do not get a pass on the fact that there are no female filmmakers in the competition — and have announced the Australian film The Tree written and directed by Julie Bertuccelli as the closing film of the 2010 festival.  It will screen out of competition.

These things matter because look at the cover of the Cannes website now:

Right next to Russell Crowe’s big bad arrow is a little girl on a tree.  You can check out the site here.

Here’s a description:

After the sudden death of her father, eight-year-old Simone shares a secret with her mother, Dawn. She’s convinced her father whispers to her through the leaves of her favourite tree.

But the new bond between mother and daughter is threatened when Dawn starts a relationship with George, the plumber called in to remove the tree’s troublesome roots.

As the branches of the tree start to infiltrate the house, and the roots destroy the foundations, the family is forced to make an agonising, but ultimately liberating, decision.

The Tree explores the capacity of imagination as a means to survive and the unstoppable power of life asserting itself over sadness.

The Tree is produced by produced by Sue Taylor and Yaël Fogiel and adapted from the novel adapted from the novel, Our Father Who Art in the Tree by Judy Pascoe.

Bertucelli also made the film Since Otar Left.

‘Tree’ to close Cannes (Variety)

Cannes Film Festival

Taylor Media


{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Julie Rigg April 30, 2010 at 4:51 PM

Yes, but it’s not in competition! Where are the films by women this year? I think we need a boycott by women in the industry.. actresses included – to refuse to adorn Cannes publicity, or participate in its juries, till the selectors lift their game.

Angelina Veritas April 30, 2010 at 5:40 PM

You’re absolutely right about the poster.
They clearly heard the rumblings of mounting protest, and as the festival approaches, the actual visuals of it will be astounding for the absence of women directors in competition.
Another interesting note: the only jury president featured is Claire Denis, who just happens to be a woman! I do think they might be a bit worried, and hopefully, a bit embarrassed.
The English translation on the Cannes website at the moment says, ‘The official selection is been finalised day after day. Check the latest updates from this website’ Not sure what that means.
Perhaps room for one more in competition film? Perhaps a woman from Africa, or Asia, or Europe or the U.S. or South America, maybe Mexico, might just possibly have a film available and would be able to clear her calendar.
I think the president of the festival said he was only having 18 official in competition films because he couldn’t find 20 that were, I suppose, worthy? Maybe they just didn’t have time to view them all.
Perhaps some women, some steely nerved producers, should simply grab a few projectors, generators, a modest sound system, install them on flat bed trucks, roll themselves up the croisette, and project some cutting edge ‘auteure’ women’s films on the outer walls of the palais?
That probably won’t go with the drapes, but, it’s a thought….

e May 1, 2010 at 7:42 AM

@Julie I like the boycott idea: maybe every woman at Cannes could refuse to have sex with any man there, until things improve?

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