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Jane Campion at Cannes

Jane Campion & her Carosse d'Or
It was a proud moment for New Zealanders and Australians last week when Jane Campion received her Carosse d'Or at Cannes. The Carosse d'Or (Golden Coach) prize is a tribute by directors of La Société des Réalisateurs de Films (SRF) to one of their own, chosen from the international filmmaking community for the innovative qualities, courage and independent-mindedness of his or her work.

Jacques Rozier was the first winner when the prize was created in 2002. Subsequent winners were Clint Eastwood, Nanni Moretti, Sembene Ousmane, David Cronenberg, Alain Cavalier, Jim Jarmusch, Naomi Kawase, Agnès Varda, Jafar Panahi et Nuri Bilge Ceylan.

Here's the SRF's list of Jane's films. It helped me to reflect on the full sweep of her work. And then to appreciate, all over again, that while making these films she's also strongly supported other women filmmakers. And then to feel deep gratitude for the way the SRF-identified qualities in her work have spilled over into her activism. Globally, there's no other director who's managed to do this.

1982 An Exercise in Discipline – Peel (short)
1983 Passionless Moments (short)
1984 Mishaps of Seduction and Conquest (video)
A Girl's Own Story (short)
After Hours (short)
1986 Dancing Daze (TV)
1989 Sweetie
1990 An Angel at My Table
1993 The Piano
1996 The Portrait of a Lady
1999 Holy Smoke
2003 In the Cut
2006 The Water Diary (from the film 8)
2009 Bright Star
2013 Top of the Lake (TV)

Pierre Rissient
Because I often wonder about who advocates for and supports successful women filmmakers, I loved reading that Jane Campion dedicated the Carosse d'Or to her cinema 'godfather', renowned cinephile Pierre Rissient, who was there to see her collect the prize. Pierre Rissient is a Frenchman who discovered Campion's short films at the start of her career in Australia and had them shown in Cannes. She barely knew of the festival at the time, but Rissient insisted she attend."He's supported me, he's been very loyal, he's helped me get finance," she said in an interview."Now he's a very old guy, a beautiful man, and to have a godfather like that in this industry is very helpful and very moving."

Last Thursday, after a 'Conversation with Jane Campion' at the Théâtre Croisette she was given the prize itself at the ceremony that opened the Directors Fortnight. Femmes du Cinema de la Television et des Nouveaux Media (Paris) were there and later posted a segment of the conversation about women directors.

Also at Cannes, this discussion about Top of The Lake, from Allocine.

Many congratulations to you, Jane Campion! Do we celebrate you enough in Australia and New Zealand? I'm not sure that we do.


  1. Congratulations! You deserve to be celebrated. Well done


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