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Ava DuVernay makes history at the Venice Film Festival after being told, ‘Don’t apply. You won’t get in’

By: Christi Carros
Publication: Los Angeles Times
September 06, 2023
September 06, 2023
(Vianney Le Caer / Invision / Associated Press)

Ava DuVernay made history Wednesday as the first African American woman to direct a feature in competition at the Venice Film Festival.

The trailblazing director debuted her picture “Origin” at the event, where she spoke about the challenges Black filmmakers face while navigating the international film festival circuit. “Origin” stars Aunjanue Ellis-Taylor as Pulitzer Prize-winning author Isabel Wilkerson, who wrote the acclaimed nonfiction book “Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents” examining systems of oppression in the United States and abroad.

“For Black filmmakers, we’re told that people who love films in other parts of the world don’t care about our stories and don’t care about our films,” DuVernay said Wednesday during a news conference, according to Variety.

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