Delphine Seyrig’s namesake film closes out Essential Cinema: Be Pretty and Shut Up!


After years of work as an actress with films such as Last Year at Marienbad, The Day of the Jackal, and Jeanne Dielman, 23 quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles, Delphine Seyrig desired to make her own projects, ones that accurately reflected her off-screen life as well as the experiences of other women.

Seyrig understood that the only solution to female representation in the film industry was female-led production, so along with Ioana Wieder and Carole Roussopoulous, Seyrig formed a filmmaking collective called “Les Insoumuses” or The Defiant Muses. Their work presented Seyrig with the opportunity to create her own projects, such as her documentary Be Pretty and Shut Up!, screening August 25th and 27th, where she interviewed 24 actresses, including Jane Fonda, Shirley Maclaine, Ellen Burstyn, and Jill Clayburgh, who voiced their frustrations with the various forms of sexism they faced as actresses.


Check out David Hudson’s fantastic piece for Criterion’s The Current on Seyrig and The Defiant Muse collective. Read it here.


Make sure to watch Be Pretty and Shut Up!, playing Aug 25-27.