Video: Cannes judges defend Jaclyn Jose’s Best Actress win

  • The jury of 69th Cannes International Film Festival held a press conference shortly after the awarding of winners to answer questions regarding their choices
  • Anthony D’Alessandro from Deadline Hollywood asked the jury why they picked a Filipino actress, Jaclyn Jose, even though “some critics felt it was a supporting performance”
  • Veteran Hollywood actor Donald Sutherland said “I think the critics were wrong. That is a big-time leading role”

CANNES, France – The jury of the recently concluded 69th Cannes International Film Festival held a press conference shortly after the awarding of winners on Sunday to answer questions regarding their choices.

Aedrianne Acar mentioned in her article for GMA News published on May 23 that Anthony D’Alessandro from Deadline Hollywood asked the jury why they picked a Filipino actress, Jaclyn Jose, even though “some critics felt it was a supporting performance” in Brillante Mendoza’s movie “Ma Rosa”.

The jury of the main competition, which is headed by “Mad Max: Fury Road” director George Miller, readily answered the question and explained their decision.

“I think the critics were wrong. That is a big-time leading role,” replied by veteran Hollywood actor Donald Sutherland.

“Come on. She’s the film. Have you seen the performance she gave? She broke my heart,” French filmmaker Arnaud Desplechin answered.

“Everybody’s heart, actually,” said Iranian film producer Katayoon Shahabi.

Sutherland explained further that he was impressed by Jose’s performance especially at the end of the movie when “she was eating those four white balls”.

Sutherland went on to acknowledge that other actresses also delivered sterling performances, mentioning Hayley Squires of Ken Loach’s UK entry “I, Daniel Blake”, which won the coveted Palme d’Or top prize. He also mentioned Maria Dragus of the Romanian film “Graduation” which won Best Director for Cristian Mungiu in a tie with Olivier Assayas of “Personal Shopper” from France.

Miller and Sutherland reminded that the festival’s rules do not allow the winners of the top three awards to win more than one prize.

Danish actor Mads Mikkelsen said that even without the festival’s rules about top three winners not winning more than one prize, Jose is still very much deserving of the Best Actress award.

“We found her to be a wonderful, wonderful leading actress, a master of her skills regardless of what the rules are in this festival. It was not a supporting character, it was an absolute beautiful, beautiful performance for lead actress. That’s why she got it,” Mikkelsen emphasized, as disclosed in an article by Edwin P. Sallan for InterAksyon.

Completing the main competition jury are actresses Kirsten Dunst, Valeria Golino, and Vanessa Paradis and Hungarian director László Nemes.

Watch the full press conference of the Cannes main competition jury here. The discussion about Jose starts at 20:10 mark.

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