The French Directors Guild has appointed Edouard Waintrop as the new artistic director of Cannes Directors’ Fortnight, replacing Frédéric Boyer who was removed from the position last month.
“The board of the Société des Réalisateurs (SRF) has just named Edouard Waintrop as director general of Directors’ Fortnight,” the guild which runs the prestigious Cannes event announced on Friday.
Waintrop, who was a critic at respected left-wing newspaper Libération for 26 years, ran the International Film Festival of Fribourg in Switzerland for four years from 2007 before taking over the direction of the Grutli cinema in Geneva earlier this year.
He was quoted in the statement as defining himself as “a curious person who never gets bored” and a passeur, a French term for someone who promotes unknown cinema to the general public, “who wanted to continue discovering cinema from across the world to then present it to the public, critics, and all those who are crazy about cinema.”
Waintrop’s appointment comes a month after Boyer was dismissed as artistic director of Directors’ Fortnight. He had held the position for just two years from 2009, after six years on the selection committee under the direction of Olivier Pere who left to head the Locarno Film Festival.
Boyer later responded with a statement saying he had been the victim of a “Franco-French attack” on his 2011 selection, “whose primary goal was to make heads roll”.
The SRF created Directors’ Fortnight in 1969, in the wake of the social unrest of May 1968, with the aim of discovering new talent and promoting independent, auteur films.
During its 42-year history, the event has shown the early films of many now internationally renowned directors including George Lucas (Thx 1138), Ken Loach (Family Life) and Martin Scorsese (Mean Streets).