Audrey Diwan, the French director who won the Golden Lion in Venice for her film “Happening, leads a very contemporary feminist reflection.

Audrey Diwan
Copyright AFP

The sixth woman in history to receive a Golden Lion

Filmmaker and screenwriter Audrey Diwan became, at 41, the second Frenchwoman to win the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival and only the sixth woman in history to receive this award. prestigious for « Happening« . Adapted from the eponymous and autobiographical book by Annie Ernaux, his film follows the journey of Anne, a 1960s student from a modest background, who becomes pregnant and desperately seeks an abortion when the law forbids it. Four years after the Weinstein affair and the beginning of the great soul-searching of the 7th art, the very gradual opening of the most prestigious awards to female directors is confirmed: in July, the Cannes Film Festival honored a young French director, Julia Ducournau , 37, Palme d’Or with Titane, a feminist film that in its own way blasts the boundaries between genres.

Four years before the legalization of the contraceptive pill

In the film “Happening” the drama experienced by Annie Ernaux, a student in litterature, takes place in 1963, four years before the legalization of the contraceptive pill and 12 years before the Veil law which legalized abortion. By adapting the feminist autofiction of Annie Ernaux, the director signs a breathless and militant film on the right of women to dispose of their bodies. Of Lebanese origin, Audrey Diwan was born in 1980 in France. Passionate about literature, she quickly turned to journalism. She started in the written press (Tecknikart, Glamour) before joining the small screen where she was a columnist in several programs devoted to the seventh art such as Cinémas (France 5) or La Journie du Cinéma (TPS Star). In 2013, she was appointed editorial director of Stylist magazine. In 2007, the journalist published her first novel , on the theme of marriage, which received the 2008 René-Fallet Prize, as well as the Claude Chabrol Prize in Saumur. In 2019, the screenwriter goes behind the camera to make her first film, But you are crazy, carried by Céline Sallette and Pio Marmaï. In 2021, she signs her second feature film, Happening, for which she received the Golden Lion at the 78th Venice Film Festival. The film was released in cinemas in February 2022.

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