(Credit: Kazak Productions)


Palme d'Or winner ‘Titane’ chosen as France’s Oscar entry


The Palme d’Or winner, Titane, has been chosen as the French entry for the 94th Academy Awards in 2022, beating out Audrey Diwan’s Venice Golden Lion winner Happening to appear in the Best International Feature Film category. 

Both Audrey Diwan’s Happening and Julia Ducournau’s Titane were put into a shortlist that also included Cédric Jimenez’s Bac Nord — AKA The Stronghold. Titane will hope to be joined by The Gravedigger’s Wife by Somalian director Khadar Ahmed, Memoria by Apichatpong Weerasethakul and Drive My Car from Japanese-born Ryusuke Hamaguchi. 

Having previously only provided the definition of the title ‘Titane’ as a meagre morsel of plot, more details have been added, stating that Ducournau’s film follows a series of unexplained crimes, alongside the story of a father who is reunited with his son who has been missing for ten years. 

Titane’s victory at the 2021 Cannes Film Festival was announced in a rather anticlimactic manner after Spike Lee mistakenly revealed the winner of the festival’s top prize at the very start of the awards ceremony. Ducournau’s victory makes her only the second female director ever to win Cannes top prize, following Jane Campion’s win for The Piano in 1993.

Speaking to NBC News about her brand new film, Julia Ducournau stated: “From the get-go, I absolutely did not want to justify my character’s violence, and I did not want to psychologize the fact that she’s a psychopath”. Continuing, she added, “When women kill in movies, it is very often linked to a cause that is explained. There is a justification. Men can be inherently violent for no reason, but for women it is utterly unacceptable”. 

A visionary filmmaker, Ducournau’s Titane joins 2016s gruesome coming-of-age tale Raw, which changed the thinking behind the usually emotionally charged sub-genre. Bringing a significant sense of punk style to her feature films, the French director and screenwriter looks to be primed to influence modern cinema well into the future.

See the trailer for Titane below.