Sharing films

by Philippe Rouyer

After a 60th anniversary fully dedicated to the future, we are once again seeking new discoveries for this 61st edition. Our new Artistic Director, Ava Cahen is our compass on that journey through the creations of young filmmakers from around the world. With her intrepid members of her selection committees, she ushers a new dawn for our selection. The oldest parallel selection of the Festival de Cannes is off to a new start, and shall never forget where it comes from. Not to sound superstitious but 61 has always been our lucky number, since 1961 was the year a first film was presented at the Festival de Cannes under the watchful eye of the Union of Film Critics (Shirley Clarke’s The Connection). It was after that successful landmark screening that our dear Semaine de la Critique was born. 

Sixty-one years later, our selection is proud to have discovered dozens of the most acclaimed directors worldwide. And we’re not nearly done. We are eager to welcome the teams of the 11 feature films and 13 short films programmed this year to our beautiful Miramar Theatre, which - since it was renovated last year - offers excellent screening conditions (recipient of the CST Excellence certification label). It’s a gamble, a commitment, from our critics who took the time to watch almost three thousand first and second films (short films and features) and have kept the gems. 

Today, as the press is at its worst and as social media keep fudging the issue, reminding us that, in France "everyone's got two jobs: his or her own job and being a film critic", our beloved Semaine is restoring our profession’s mark and prestige. Critics are not merely providers of accounts, analyses and assessments, they also discover and share new talents, much like the young filmmakers of this 61st Semaine de la Critique, whose delightful, promising first steps we offer to share with you. 

Philippe Rouyer


of the French Union

of Film and TV critics