The 75th Cannes Film Festival will be held from May 17 to 28, 2022. Some of the greatest events in history will be presented along with juicy anecdotes from celebrities on the Croisette. While this event is synonymous with glamour and glitter, it is also an opportunity to discover committed filmmakers or beautiful designer dresses. The festival has made a legend, year after year.
Committed Filmmakers on the Croisette
In the early 70’s and after the events of May 1968, the Cannes Festival opened its doors to filmmakers who were victims of censorship. Gilles Jacob, general delegate of the Festival from 1978 to 2001, is particularly proud to have been able to “help the banned filmmakers” and to encourage them to come to the Cannes Festival.
Many filmmakers have, in circumstances that have been either incredible or frightening, managed to screen their works on the Croisette in extreme situations, sometimes arousing the anger of the authorities in their countries.
For more than two decades, committed filmmakers have conquered the Croisette and won the Palme d’Or: Gus Van Sant with Elephant in 2003 (about the Colombine massacre), Hirokazu Kore-eda with A Family Affair, a film about those left behind in Japanese society, or Michael Moore with Fahrenheit 9/11 and Laurent Cantet with Between the Walls.
We don’t talk enough about the many films that, year after year, bear witness to difficult and ongoing realities around the world. Whether they win awards or not, filmmakers are keen to show political and/or social fiction at Cannes.
Cannes Film Festival: the Yearly Glamour and Fashion Event
The Cannes Film Festival is undoubtedly one of the most glamorous events on the planet. The most emblematic celebrities have walked the famous red carpets. It is the occasion for us to see them wearing their most beautiful gala outfits. Back on the most mythical of the Cannes Festival.
Tom Cruise, Sharon Stone, Romy Schneider, Elizabeth Taylor or Brigitte Bardot and Sophie Marceau for the French, it is impossible to name all the stars to have walked the steps of the Cannes Film Festival. Celebrities take advantage of these two weeks to parade on the red carpet wearing dresses more stunning than the rest. Whether it is with a plunging neckline, a dress with a long train, or a total glitter look, in Cannes everything is allowed.
On its 75th anniversary, the Cannes Film Festival has been scrutinized by the whole world. Since its inception in 1946, the event has been strongly favored by the stars. Every year, they crowd the steps of the Palais des Festivals to show off their most beautiful outfits. We remember for example the magnificent Cinderella dress of Blake Lively, the bralette created by Jean Paul Gaultier for Madonna or the blue dress with open shoulders of Lady Diana.
A Political Festival
Although it is often associated with glamour, the Cannes Festival has also accumulated political incidents since its foundation. Here is a brief, but not exhaustive, look at these moments that are hidden behind the screens of the Croisette.
The 21st edition of the Festival began on May 10, 1968, but events in Paris quickly took over the red carpet. Personalities such as François Truffaut and Jean-Luc Godard called for a halt to the festivities. The general delegate of the Cannes Festival at the time, Robert Fabre Le Bret, opposed it. Members of the jury resigned and on May 18, the director of Peppermint frappé, Carlos Saura, led the rebellion. He refused to allow his film to be screened. The Festival was officially closed on May 19, 1968, and that year no prizes were awarded.
Politics sometimes invites itself into the prize list. In 1981, the Polish director Andrzej Wajda unveiled The Iron Man. Poland was then in the midst of a political transformation. The film tells the story, which is played out at the Gdańsk shipyards, while the Solidarność movement is in full formation. The film won the Palme d’Or, so it is hard not to see it as a political act.
In 1995, Underground by Emir Kusturica, provoked a strong polemic, but won the Palme d’or. Several intellectuals such as Alain Finkielkraut or Bernard-Henri Lévy criticized the director for his links with Slobodan Milošević.
In 2004, Quentin Tarantino and his jury awarded Fahrenheit 9/11, by Michael Moore. This documentary was critical of the President Bush’s administration.
In 2010, Thierry Frémaux and the Cannes Festival supported the director Jafar Panahi. The director was invited as a member of the jury while he was imprisoned in Iran, accused of having made a film against the regime at the time.
Me Too, 5 Years Later
Five years after the Weinstein scandal, the emergence of the #MeToo movement and the beginning of the awareness of the 7th art, the opening of the most prestigious awards to female directors is taking hold.
In July 2021, the young French director, Julia Ducournau, won the Palme d’Or with Titanium, a feminist film that explodes the boundaries between genres. However, after a year rich in a large selection of women directors, this year the women directors are lagging behind. Only three films out of the 18 selected were directed by women. The Cannes Film Festival has been regularly criticized, in recent years, for not highlighting enough female talent.
This year again, the Cannes Festival brings together the great names of cinema and promises great discoveries. No less than 2200 films were viewed, coming from 155 different countries. Among the 18 lucky winners, four directors have already had the honor of receiving a Palme d’Or, including Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne.