This Is What Emily Blunt and Rachel Weisz Say Can Help Hollywood's Female Drought
At the fifth annual IFP/Calvin Klein bash in Cannes, we polled some famous people about the important issue. This is what they said.
On May 18, the Independent Filmmaker Project partnered with Calvin Klein for their fifth annual bash during the Cannes Film Festival to honor an esteemed set of actresses in an effort to spotlight women's contributions on the silver screen.
The event is one of several that have happened on the French Riviera during the 68th annual festival that continue an important dialogue on what can be done to reverse the drought of female writers, directors and producers in Hollywood and film industries abroad.
See more Cannes: The Red-Carpet Arrivals
The event — held at a glamorous $50 million estate in the hills above Cannes — honored Rachel Weisz, Isabelle Huppert, Melanie Laurent, Emily Blunt and Sienna Miller, who were all decked out in glam Calvin Klein duds. They mingled with fellow invitees like Jake Gyllenhaal, Doutzen Kroes, Kat Graham, Lily Donaldson, Joan Smalls, Natalia Vodianova (the face of the CK's Euphoria fragrance) and Harvey Weinstein. Hot girl group Haim also performed live on the lawn of the villa.
"It's very strong for us as a brand to be associated with such a good organization as IFP to help support women. It's a cause very important to us," Calvin Klein Collection women's creative director Francisco Costa told THR, which got us thinking of polling others on the red carpet for solutions to the problem.
Rachel Weisz: "We need to have more female directors, producers and screenplay writers to have films and narratives told from a female perspective."
Emily Blunt: "We need to empower female writers. They have a fantastic tap on material and they write better roles for women, and therefore people see better roles for women and they see women in better roles for themselves. We should start at the writers. Those are the people who need emboldening and helping."
Melanie Laurent: "Maybe the only thing would be for education. If we teach young children to respect the women, we can make a difference. Maybe if we change the salary instead of paying men more than women, that would be a big difference. This is a rich problem, and other countries have it worse where women can’t even wear what they want or where they are treated as if they don’t exist."
Isabelle Huppert: "I don’t have a solution. The cinema has provided a place for women to express themselves already. You just have to make sure more and more great films happen and through that, encourage the expression of women."
Joana Vicente, executive director of IFP: "Events like this help and so do giving grants, doing fellowships and encouraging every aspect of the industry. You have to be there at all of those steps in helping and supporting women. When we look for projects at IFP, we pay attention that it’s a priority to support women. There are other criteria to consider, of course, but the more attention you call to the issue, the more people are going to change and give opportunities to women. "