In the latest petulant response from the Grand Prix du Festivale d'Angouleme, a French comics award whose name translates roughly as "cheese so stinky we cannot even come up with any more stinky cheese jokes about it," the festival has decided to change the prize to an open vote, where voters can simply write in whatever name they like. This follows a two-day shitstorm where a French group called BD Egalite proposed a boycott after 30 men and 0 women were nominated for the award, prompting ten creators including "The Great One" Brian Bendis to ask for their names to be removed from the ballot. The festival at first responded with shitty comments about their being few women artists in The Louvre and indicating that they did not feel women had made a significant impact in the entire history of comics, though noting that they "love women." This, of course, only incited people more, prompting a response from BD Egalite, and, via a report from The Beat, a scathing reply from Florence Cestac, the only woman to win the award in its 43 year history, who called executive officer Frank Bondoux a total moron:
Oui bien sûr, mais c'est l'avis du directeur du festival d'Angoulême qui est un crétin total. Le festival est devenu une foire à dédicaces, un business qui n'a plus rien de culturel. Les organisateurs du festival ne connaissent pas leur sujet : ce n'est pas parce que la bande dessinée est consommée et achetée majoritairement par les hommes que les œuvres féminines n'existent pas. Il y a plein d'auteures de ma génération et de la génération suivante qui méritent amplement le Grand prix. La moindre des choses, c'est que des femmes soient nominées!
Google translated as...
Yes of course, but it is the opinion of the Angoulême festival director who is a total moron. The festival has become a fair in signings, a business that has nothing culturally. Festival organizers do not know about them: it's not because the comic is consumed and purchased mainly by men than women work do not exist.There are plenty of authors of my generation and the next generation that fully deserve the Grand Prize. The least is that women are nominated!
Earlier today, Angouleme begrudgingly added six female names to the ballot, according to Robot 6, but then promptly removed them and declared the voting open in a gesture that, based on the previous days' events, can only be taken as a dismissive handwaving of the entire affair. In other words, if they're forced to consider that at least one woman alive today may be worthy of a lifetime achievement award in comics, they might as well not nominate anybody at all.
We'll keep you updated.