International Competition : First French Fictions

La Papesse Jeanne

Joan the pope

Jean Breschand

french with english subtitles
Gérard Frot-Coutaz award 2016

Somewhere in Europe in the IXth century, the destiny of Joan is being played out: that of a naive and gentle young woman. After her father’s death, she begins to work as a copyist in a monastery where she becomes attached and soon falls in love with a cheerful monk named Fromentin. The two are made to face a world that is perverted in its own faith, plagued by a violence which will take the life of Joan’s precious companion. La Papesse Jeanne (Pope Joan) tackles the question of history in cinema through faith in the cinematic act’s capacity to elicit a world. Jean Breschand draws the portrait of a charismatic figure, singular in her femininity. At once vigorous and carnal, Joan makes her way towards consciousness and power. This occurs without ever highlighting or decreeing the protagonist’s subversive dimension. (Arnaud Hée)

Scriptwriter and film critic, Jean Breschand has directed many documentaries. He wrote for Vertigo and published for the Cahiers du cinéma, Le documentaire, l’autre face du cinéma.
Courts métrages
notamment : Métropolitaines (1995), Le Retour du monde (2003), L'Aménagement du territoire (2006)

La Papesse Jeanne is his first feature film.


Agathe Bonitzer; Grégoire Tachnakian, Sabine Haudepin, Jean-Emmanuel Pagni, Nans Laborde-Jourdaa, Francis Coffinet, Mostefa Djadjam
Jean Breschand; François Prodromides
Carlos Alvarez
Graciela Barrault
Sylvain Kassap
Art direction
Brigitte Brasart
Florence Bresson
Stéphane Jourdain (La Huit Production) et De Gaulle Eid (CINED Productions)

Gérard Frot-Coutaz award


World Premiere


Lucie Commiot (Shellac)


2016 Competition