Blanchett, a two-time Oscar victor, is heading the jury that features five women, four men, seven nationalities and five continents.
While some have criticized the relatively low number of women directors in official competition, Cannes artistic director Thierry Fremaux told Variety last week that he has been conscious of the gender makeup of the jury.
The jury for this year's fest under Blanchett includes Chang Chen (Chinese actor), Ava DuVernay (American writer, director, producer), Robert Guédiguian (French director, writer, producer), Khadja Nin (Burundian songwriter, composer, singer), Léa Seydoux (French actress), Kristen Stewart (American actress), Denis Villeneuve (Canadian director, writer) and Andrei Zvyagintsev (Russian director, writer).
Two-time Oscar victor Cate is best known for films including Blue Jasmine, The Aviator and Carol, for which she was also nominated.
It's a particularly big day for American writer-director Ava, who has also just been announced as the first black woman to direct Star Wars. "Right now, two out of the three committees have as many women as men".
"Blade Runner 2049" and "Arrival" director Villeneuve has had several films at the festival including "Sicario", while Stewart has appeared in Cannes selection including "Personal Shopper" and "Clouds of Sils Maria".
The 28-year-old actress - who is, perhaps, best known for her starring role in the "Twilight" franchise - is among a star-studded list of names who are to serve as jurors at the annual film festival in the south of France.
The announcement comes shortly after it was suggested that controversial director Lars von Trier is set to return to the Cannes Film Festival next month.
The director hasn't been invited to Cannes since 2011, when his movie "Melancholia" screened in the festival's main competition. But it turned out that I was not a Jew. What can I say?'