Given the size and scope of the Cannes Film Festival, which begins on Tuesday, it is famously hard to gauge its highs and lows. The finest films in the world are on display there. It's a red carpet extravaganza. It's a dealmaking beehive on the French Riviera.
After a three-year absence, Johnny Depp makes a comeback with a French historical drama. During the Cannes Film Festival, Jeanne du Barry
Urfi Javed Faces Criticism For Replicating Bella Hadid's Cannes 2021 Golden Lungs Look
However, according to at least some measures, Cannes is now back after having its 2020 festival canceled, its 2021 edition drastically reduced, and its victorious comeback in 2022.
The seasoned producer and longstanding partner of Todd Haynes, Christine Vachon, adds, “Let's just say it's gotten very hard to get restaurant reservations again.”
The dazzling Cote d'Azur festival will feel certain that it has survived the storms of the epidemic and the supposed danger of streaming when it debuts “Jeanne du Barry,” a historical drama by Mawenn starring Johnny Depp, on Tuesday at the 76th Cannes Film Festival. (Netflix and Cannes are still at odds.)
The Palme d'Or winner “Triangle of Sadness,” “Top Gun: Maverick,” and “Elvis,” three Oscar best picture candidates from last year's festival, which was considered to be a banner one, further establish Cannes as the leading worldwide launchpad for large and small films.
A CANNES BLOCKBUSTER
The festival this year is highlighted by the world premieres of two major films: James Mangold's “Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny,” starring Harrison Ford in his final performance as the character, and Martin Scorsese's epic 1920s Osage Nation drama “Killers of the Flower Moon,” starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Robert De Niro.
However, even those films, as successful as Cannes might be, hint to the diversity of the filmmaking available. Years ago, Scorsese and Mangold were the first to debut their groundbreaking works in the Directors Fortnight sidebar at Cannes. In 1973, Scorsese released “Mean Streets,” while in 1995, Mangold released “Heavy.”
However, they will be releasing considerably larger pictures this season, which will undoubtedly sell out the Croisette. For Apple TV+, Scorsese has his $200 million epic. Additionally, Mangold will launch “a more splendiferous project” than his understated debut, as he puts it.
A memorial to Ford will be included in the “Indy” celebration. He will share an honorary Palme d'Or with Michael Douglas. Mangold sees it as an opportunity for Ford to embrace the franchise's global fan base. The filmmaker claims that the “Indiana Jones” movie' core values are derived from classic film.
These are things where, according to Mangold, “you're taking your guidance from the classics.” The French are particularly fond of that aspect of American movies. They hold vintage films in higher regard than even the American public does in many aspects. It becomes a very amazing forum as a result.
A HIGHEST LEVEL EVER FOR FEMALE FILMMAKERS
This year, 21 movies are up for the Palme d'Or, which will be awarded by a jury presided over by Ruben Stlund, a Swedish writer-director who won the award the previous year. A new record for Cannes in its almost eight-decade history, seven are directed by women. Filmmaker Alice Rohrwacher from Italy's “La Chimera,” starring Josh O'Connor and Isabella Rossellini, is one of the most eagerly awaited.
Labor unrest on both sides of the Atlantic will play out throughout the festival, which runs through May 27. Protests over pension changes, which include increasing the retirement age, have been rampant in France in recent months. Screenwriters in the US are on strike in an effort to be paid more in the streaming age.
The likelihood of a protracted work stoppage might possibly increase the cost of completed films at Cannes, the biggest film festival in the world. Haynes' “May December,” starring Natalie Portman as a journalist who embeds with a couple (Julianne Moore, Charles Melton), who were formerly well-known for their age difference, is one of the films looking for distribution.
Vachon, a producer on “May December,” claims that her business, Killer Films, and the indie legend Haynes are used to “pivoting endlessly and finding opportunities no matter what the sea winds bring.” This is true even if arthouses have failed to match the box office revival at multiplexes.
A-LISTERS AND AUTEURS
As is customary, the Cannes heavyweights are well represented in this year's competition roster, including Hirokazu Kore-eda (“Monster”), Wim Wenders (“Perfect Days”), Nuri Bilge Ceylan (“About Dry Grasses”), Ken Loach (“The Old Oak”), and Nanny Moretti (“A Brighter Tomorrow”).
One of the most anticipated movies at the festival is Jonathan Glazer's “The Zone of Interest,” which was filmed at Auschwitz. It's his first release since “Under the Skin” in 2013. The short film “Strange Way of Life,” starring Pedro Pascal and Ethan Hawke, will be shown by Pedro Almodóvar. “Asteroid City,” directed by Wes Anderson, will make its premiere.
Along with “Euphoria” director Sam Levinson's forthcoming HBO series “The Idol,” which stars The Weeknd and Lily-Rose Depp, “Firebrand,” starring Alicia Vikander as Catherine Parr and Judd Law as Tudor King Henry VIII, and the Pixar picture “Elemental,” which wraps out the festival.
The longest and one of the most thought-provoking films in Cannes will be released by “12 Years a Slave” director Steve McQueen. The four-plus hour documentary “Occupied City,” which McQueen and his wife, Dutch novelist Bianca Stigter, produced, blends narration outlining violent occurrences that occurred across Amsterdam during the Nazi occupation with contemporary video shot there.
At Cannes, McQueen also launched his career as a feature filmmaker. His first picture, “Hunger,” earned the Camera d'Or, an award for finest first effort, in 2008. McQueen claims, “It's never as good as the first time.”
However, it's the most significant film festival, says McQueen. “Our movie poses questions. Here is where you want to screen films that provoke thought and raise issues. You are directly involved.
While a lot of attention will be focused on how people respond to the newest Scorsese picture or “Asteroid City,” Cannes will, as it does each year, introduce new filmmakers to larger cinema audiences. The uncommon first feature in Palme competition is “Banel & Adama” by Senegalese director Ramata-Toulaye Sy.
The 50-year-old Argentine director Rodrigo Moreno will be attending Cannes for the first time with his heist thriller “The Delinquents,” which is infused with existentialism and artistic flourishes. It's one of the Un Certain Regard section's highlights.
Because of the epidemic, Moreno needed five years to complete the movie. In another sense, however, its Cannes nomination is a long time coming. Berlin's Un Certain Regard and main competition both accepted Moreno's first film as a single filmmaker. The filmmakers choose Berlin.
Currently in my career. I'm concentrating on: If this enables me to continue working and complete the next movie, that's OK with me. I absolutely desire nothing else,” claims Moreno.
It took over five years to shoot this movie, which is absurd, he continues. But on the plus side, I had to go shooting every year. I just knew that a new year had begun and that I needed to start shooting. I had to fire the next after.