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Justine Triet suggests Oscars need to introduce gender quota amid Best Director uproar

Justine Triet attending the London Critic's Circle Awards on Sunday night (Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)
Justine Triet attending the London Critic's Circle Awards on Sunday night (Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)

Justine Triet has suggested the Oscars need to introduce a gender quota following the uproar that Greta Gerwig among other female filmmakers were snubbed from the Best Director category.

Triet, who co-wrote and directed Anatomy of a Fall, is the only female nominated in this year’s category alongside Yorgos Lanthimos (Poor Things), Christopher Nolan (Oppenheimer), Jonathan Glazer (The Zone of Interest) and Martin Scorsese (Killers of the Flower Moon).

The French filmmaker admitted that she wasn’t keen on the idea of quotas until she saw how their introduction had improved the César Academy, France’s answer to the Oscars, following the organisation’s reform in 2020.

It came after the organisation hit a crisis point when its entire board resigned amid accusations of sexism.

Since then, gender equal representation has been introduced into all its decision-making chapters, including the presidency where a woman and man share the role.

Attending the London Critic’s Circle Awards, the acclaimed director told the Standard: “I was not for quotas but now I'm changing my mind about it because it changed something in France with the quotas for movies, for women, for everything.

“And so now I think, maybe it would be interesting, but I'm not in charge of the rules, but I’m super happy, super proud [of my Oscar nomination] and I would love to share this with all the [female directors].”

Triet pictured with Anatomy of a Fall co-writer Arthur Harari (Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)
Triet pictured with Anatomy of a Fall co-writer Arthur Harari (Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)

The Palme d'Or 2023 winner went on to single out Gerwig, whose box office smash Barbie earned eight nominations including Best Picture at the Oscars, adding: “I would have loved Greta Gerwig be there [too] because I think she deserved it."

Triet’s nod comes a year after female filmmakers were omitted from 2023’s category despite several Oscar contenders being helmed by women - Sarah Polley for Women Talking, Gina Prince-Bythewood for The Woman King, Maria Schrader for She Said and Charlotte Wells for Aftersun.

In its century-long history, the Academy Awards has only nominated eight women in the Best Director category, and only three have won - Kathryn Bigelow, Chloé Zhao and Jane Campion.

Oscars aside, Triet was in the capital to pick up the screenwriting award for Anatomy of a Fall alongside her writing partner Arthur Harari at the London Film Critics’ Circle Awards while Holocaust drama The Zone Of Interest was named film of the year.

Andrew Haigh’s drama All Of Us Strangers won the Attenborough Award for British/Irish film of the year, with star Andrew Scott named actor of the year and his co-star Paul Mescal named British/Irish performer for his body of work in 2023 at the event held at The Mayfair Hotel.

Emma Stone was named actress of the year for Poor Things, while Da’Vine Joy Randolph was named best supporting actress for her turn in drama The Holdovers.

Paul Mescal (L) and Andrew Scott (R) attending the awards at The Mayfair Hotel (Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)
Paul Mescal (L) and Andrew Scott (R) attending the awards at The Mayfair Hotel (Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)

Riverdale’s Charles Melton won the supporting actor gong for May December, and Celine Song’s directorial debut Past Lives was named foreign language film of the year, and Hayao Miyazaki’s The Boy And The Heron won the new animated film award.

American Fiction star Jeffrey Wright took to the stage to receive the Dilys Powell Award for excellence in film. The Derek Malcolm award for innovation was presented to Rustin star Colman Domingo.

Mia McKenna-Bruce received the group’s first international breakthrough performance award for How To Have Sex, and the film’s writer-director Molly Manning Walker won the Philip French award for British/Irish breakthrough filmmaker.

The 44th London Critics’ Circle Film Awards were voted for by the 210-member film section of the Critics’ Circle.