Cannes: 'Money Monster' debuts with Jodie Foster as rare female director

'Money Monster' stars George Clooney as the host of a financial TV program who is taken hostage on the air, while Julia Roberts stars as his producer.

Joel Ryan/AP
Jodie Foster attends the 2016 Cannes Film Festival.

“Money Monster,” debuting at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, is directed by Jodie Foster, making it one of the few movies being released this summer to have a female director. 

In “Monster,” which is being screened at Cannes on May 12 and comes to movie theaters on May 13, George Clooney stars as the host of a financial TV show who is taken hostage by someone who took his advice and found it went poorly. Julia Roberts co-stars as the producer for Ms. Clooney's TV show. 

Ms. Foster has directed many films, including 2011’s “The Beaver” and the 1991 film “Little Man Tate.” She has also helmed episodes of the Netflix series “Orange Is the New Black.” 

“Monster” is one of two films released by a big studio this summer that has a female director, with director Thea Sharrock of “Me Before You” joining Foster in that category. 

The movie is being released following the American Civil Liberties Union having announced that the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission are looking at the lack of female directors currently working in the industry. The ACLU asked that the government look into the topic.

“In the year since our report was released, there has been much lip-service paid to furthering opportunities for women, but few definitive steps and no serious movement in the number of women directors hired,” said Melissa Goodman of the ACLU in a statement. “We are confident that the government will corroborate our work and push industry leaders to address the ongoing violations of the legal and civil rights of these directors and of all women in the film and television industries.” 

Foster said she believes the US needs to catch up on this issue. 

“There have always been, although not in the greatest numbers, independent female filmmakers,” she said in an interview with the Associated Press. “There's always been international filmmakers that were women. It really was America that ... has been the last in the mainstream arena.”

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