With his film "Ash is purest white", Chinese director Jia Zhangke will be the only representative of Chinese cinema in the official competition for the Palme d'Or of the 71st Cannes Film Festival, organizers said on Thursday.
"Ash is purest white" tells the story of a young dancer, Qiao, in Datong in 2001, who is in love with Bin, a local gangster. Qiao will take Bin's defense during a clash between gangs and is sentenced to five years in prison. Out of prison, Qiao goes in search of Bin to start all over again.
Chosen for the fifth time in the festival official selection, the 47-year-old Chinese film director and screenwriter won Best Screenplay Award in 2013 for his film "A touch of Sin" and was also a member of the official jury selection at the 67th Cannes Film Festival in May 2014, which was chaired by New Zealand director Jane Campion.
Four French directors appear among the list of this year's 18 movies competing for the top prize. They are Stephane Brize with "En guerre," Jean-Luc Godard with "Le livre d'image," Chrisophe Honore with "Plaire, aimer et courir vite," and Eva Husson with "Les filles du soleil."
The official selection list includes also "Everybody knows" by Iranian director Asghar Farhadi, Italian Matteo Garrone's "Dogman", Japanese Kore-Eda Hirokazu's "Shoplifters", "BlacKkKlansman" by Spike Lee, "Under the Silver Lake" by David Robert Michell and Jafar Panahi's "Three Faces."
Oscar-winning actress Cate Blanchett will preside over the 2018 jury. The 71st Cannes Film Festival will take place from May 8 to 19.