God's Creatures, a Screen Ireland production starring Paul Mescal, Emily Watson and Aisling Franciosi, is to have its world premiere in the prestigious Directors' Fortnight strand at next month's Cannes film festival. Shot in Donegal, Saela Davis and Anna Rose Holmer's film concerns a mother who brings trouble to her community after telling a lie to protect her son. Fodhla Cronin O'Reilly, Bafta nominated for Lady Macbeth, produces a collaboration with the BBC, The Western Regional Audiovisual Production Fund and Donegal Film Office. The script is by Shane Crowley. "We couldn't be more thrilled to premiere God's Creatures at Directors' Fortnight," Cronin O'Reilly, raised in Kerry, said. "It has been a joy to work with such a special and unique group of collaborators. Saela and Anna are visionary filmmakers who connected deeply and sensitively with Shane's personal Irish-set script. We're also delighted to tell this special story with Emily, Paul, Aisling and all whose performances are both intimate and iconic."
There will be further domestic interest in Directors' Fortnight. Alex Garland's Men, an offbeat horror film starring Jessie Buckley, another Kerry woman, will get a "special screening" at the event. The trailer for that shocker, featuring Rory Kinnear as a multitude of sinister individuals, has already attracted much attention.
Just three out of 18 titles in the initial list of films competing for the Palme d'Or are by women. In contrast, 11 out the current 23 Quinzaine titles are from female directors
Established in 1969 as a response to the political protests of "May 68" – which shut down the previous festival – Directors' Fortnight (or Quinzaine des Réalisateurs), now based in the Théâtre Croisette, has ever since offered a more offbeat alternative to the Official Selection a few hundred metres down the shoreline. Directors who premiered films at the Quinzaine include Sofia Coppola, Jim Jarmusch, Spike Lee, George Lucas and Martin Scorsese. Lenny Abrahamson, Oscar-nominated Irish director of Room, launched Garage at the event in 2007. Recent hits include Robert Eggers's The Lighthouse and Sean Baker's The Florida Project.
This year's Quinzaine boasts a strong line-up featuring significantly stronger female representation than that in the Official Competition. Just three out of 18 titles in the initial list of films competing for the Palme d'Or are by women. In contrast, 11 out the current 23 Quinzaine titles are from female directors. Mia Hansen-Løve, whose Bergman Island played at Cannes last year, directs Léa Seydoux and Nicole Garcia in a family drama called One Fine Morning. Alice Winocour, prize winner at the Fortnight with Mustang in 2015, is back with a story about urban terrorism entitled Revoir Paris. Fans of Mark Jenkin's extraordinary Bait, a rough-hewn Cornish drama from 2019, will be rushing to see his Enys Men, a 16mm horror starring Mary Woodvine and Edward Rowe.
The Cannes film festival runs from May 17th until May 28th
CANNES DIRECTORS’ FORTNIGHT 2022
Scarlet by Pietro Marcello – Opening Film
1976 by Manuela Martelli
The Water by Elena López Riera
The Dam by Ali Cherri
The Super 8 Years by Annie Ernaux & David Ernaux-Briot
Ashkal by Youssef Chebbi
The Five Devils by Léa Mysius
De Humani Corporis Fabrica by Véréna Paravel & Lucien Castaing-Taylor
Continental Drift (South) by Lionel Baier
Enys Men by Mark Jenkin
Falcon Lake by Charlotte Le Bon
Will-o'-the-Wisp by João Pedro Rodrigues
Funny Pages by Owen Kline
God's Creatures by Anna Rose Holmer & Saela Davis
Harkis by Philippe Faucon
Men by Alex Garland
The Mountain by Thomas Salvador
Pamfir by Dmytro Sukholytkyy-Sobchuk
The Green Perfume by Nicolas Pariser – Closing Film
Paris Memories by Alice Winocour
Under the Fig Trees by Erige Sehiri
One Fine Morning by Mia Hansen-Løve
A Male by Fabian Hernández