On the pages of the agenda of this year’s edition of the Cannes Festival, Cristian Mungiu makes an interesting confession. He says that “recognizing the value and the originality in cinematography was never easy”, adding that, as for the youngsters, it is even more difficult. You can feel the thrilling honesty, but we can see here also the evidence of the awareness of your own way. Until his appointment as the Chairman of the jury that will evaluate the short films in the competition and the Cinéfondation productions, Cristian Mungiu’s statement went through several stages. At first, there was the participation with the debut movie, Occident (2002), at Quinzaine des Réalisateurs.
His great success was in 2007 – Palme d`Or for 4 months, 3 weeks and 2 days. The Best Movie Award, granted by the European Cinema Academy, added to this important trophy. Two years later, we find him again at Un Certain Regard, with Amintiri din Epoca de Aur (Tales from the Golden Age – e.n.), as producer, screenwriter and director. In 2012, Dupa dealuri (Beyond the Hills) receives the Best Screenplay Award and the Best Female Interpretation Award. 2013 is the year which brings him his first invitation in the official jury, led by Steven Spielberg. He returns to Cannes, in the feature competition with Bacalaureat (Graduation) (2016), crowned with the Best Director Award. Now, in 2017, he is appointed in the head of a jury, the one assigned to assess the Cinéfondation productions, respectively the short films in the competition.
His jury will award Palme d’Or for the second category and will grant the awards for the youngsters participating in the Cinéfondation competition. It is understood that being chosen as the leader of a jury team is also a recognition of value and originality, to resume the words of the filmmaker. Four other filmmakers are also included in the same jury, and they have important experiences, too. The actress Clotilde Hesme starred in theater plays, but she also played memorable roles in cinema, collaborating with important directors: Philippe Garel, Christophe Honoré (coming at Cannes with his movie, Les Chansons d’amour), Bertrand Bonello, Raoul Ruiz, Catherine Corsini.
She is the holder of a César for the Best Female Hope (2012). Barry Jenkins was born and raised in Miami, having already made several movies and working for the television. Of course, an appreciated filmmaker. Another member of the jury, Eric Khoo, comes from Singapore and he managed to bring to Cannes a movie from his country for the first time. He appeared at Quinzaine de Réalisateurs in 2005 with Be with Me, and in 2008 he entered the official competition with My Magic. Athina Rachel studied literature, philosophy and theater in Thessaloniki and is a reliable collaborator of Yorgos Lanthimos, a participant in this year’s official competition. They are benchmark names in their countries, but also in the cinema world.
The four members of the jury, with Cristian Mungiu as the moderator of the debates, will have to choose between 9 short films, and respectively 16 titles in the 4 programs of the Cinéfondation selection. As usual, the latter are arranged in equal groups in terms of the screening time, four titles in one session. Their meeting with the audience is organized during three days, in the Bunuel Hall, starting on Wednesday, May 24. The short films have a different regime, prefacing the features that will be screened, but also benefiting from a compact viewing experience. Cristian Mungiu’s jury will open its record in the days preceding the official ceremony announcing the main list, which is expected, as usual, at the closing ceremony of the festival, namely on Sunday evening, May 28, this year.