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Directors’ Fortnight at Cannes to Offer €7,500 People’s Choice Prize

Short Summary:

Cannes' Directors' Fortnight has introduced a new People's Choice award, with a €7,500 prize supported by the Fondation Chantal Akerman. This marks the festival's first audience award, aimed at celebrating unique cinematic propositions and expanding audience reach for the winning film.

In an innovative move, the Directors' Fortnight section of the Cannes Film Festival, France, has established a new accolade known as the People's Choice prize. This addition, supported by the Fondation Chantal Akerman, comes with a monetary reward of €7,500 for the selected filmmaker and will be presented at the event's closing ceremony.

This initiative represents a significant milestone as it is heralded as the first audience award in the festival's storied history. According to festival organizers, the Directors' Fortnight cherishes the principle of non-competition among filmmakers. The introduction of the People's Choice award aims to highlight and support a film that stands out for its distinctiveness and the ability to captivate the audience, rather than declaring it the "best" film in a competitive sense.

The award seeks to honor the legacy of Chantal Akerman, a filmmaker known for her pioneering and independent cinematic voice. Akerman's work has not only been influential but has also received recognition at the Directors' Fortnight, with four of her films being selected for the festival in the past. Her film "23 quai du Commerce - 1080 Brussels" has recently been acclaimed as the greatest film in cinema history by Sight And Sound, underlining her lasting impact on the industry.

While the Directors' Fortnight remains a non-competitive segment of the Cannes Film Festival, it has traditionally offered a variety of partner prizes, such as the SACD prize for the best French-language feature and the Europa Cinemas award for the best European film. This new People's Choice award is a testament to the festival's commitment to fostering individuality and freedom in cinematographic expression, aiming to enhance the visibility of unique films and support filmmakers in reaching wider audiences.

The Cannes Film Festival will announce its main section selections on April 11, with parallel sections, including the Directors' Fortnight, to follow the next week, where the inaugural People's Choice prize will be eagerly awaited by attendees and participants alike.