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Boyer Responds to Directors’ Fortnight Abrupt Dismissal

Boyer Responds to Directors' Fortnight Abrupt Dismissal

Frédéric Boyer whose edition for Directors’ Fortnight in Cannes this year showed eight feature debuts has not been reappointed for the coming year. Boyer also serves as director of Les Arcs European Film Festival held in December and which is now calling for entries.

SRF (Society of Film Directors) is recruiting the new Director General for the 2012 edition of the Directors’ Fortnight. Applications should be sent by email to contact AT until July 8, 2011 (CV or career path and a letter from the project). Interviews will be held the week of 18 to 22 July 2011.

The news of Boyers dismissal had been circulating behind the scenes for several days previous and came as no real surprise since Boyer (who isn’t part of the inner circle of film critics), had come up against a strong underlying hostility since his appointment two years ago when Olivier Père left for Locarno. The success of this year’s Cannes Critics’ Week only served to hasten his dismissal.

CineEuropa just published Boyer’s response to his sudden dismissal. Read below the jump.

Directors’ Fortnight: Boyer settles his scores
Abruptly dismissed from his post as delegate general of the Directors’ Fortnight at the start of the week (see news), Frédéric Boyer has given his version of events and delivered a message of warning about the detrimental actions of one section of the French press.

Recalling that the Directors’ Fortnight was founded “to show films where the urgent need to create images was freed, necessarily, from all orders and dictates”, that this “spirit of freedom” alone makes it possible to discover talents, “guarantee the survival of diverse cinema and independent creation” and “give it visibility on the market”, he believes that

“the 2011 selection was the target of a Franco-Cannes war whose primary aim was to make heads roll.”

“The fact remains that if these films travel across the world today, it’s because many professionals spotted their boldness, uniqueness and potential to cross borders”, he said. “Unlike a certain French press which chose, even before seeing the films, to ignore or attack my selection, the international press played its role and spread the word wonderfully.”

As he bowed out, Boyer said he hoped that in the future the French Society of Film Directors would find “the solution for continuing to resist the dictates of a certain press which now only swears by its own, and to renew this contract of independence which makes it so unique and so precious in an increasingly formatted world”.

Fabien Lemercier

IndieWIRE’s interview with him in May worth rereading for his take on the festival sidebar and his own profession. His discussion of this year’s selection is also available here.

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