Cannes 2022 will have the Ukrainian war, but fewer women – 16/05/2022 – Illustrated

The masks that covered the beautiful faces of stars like Tilda Swinton and Marion Cotillard, the cotton swabs that invaded the nostrils of filmmakers or journalists and the vaccination passport that prevented many from landing on the French Riviera last year will no longer compete for attention with the glamor and charm of Cannes film festival.

During the 75th edition of the traditional French film festival, which starts this Tuesday and runs until the end of May, the Covid-19 should only be a distant memory, after the relaxation of the rules to a minimum.

There are those who fear that the decision will make the event a major vector for the spread of the coronavirus, as they believe that the Bafta in London went to the audiovisual industry two months ago, but the sunny climate of the Côte d’Azur already seems to have abolished masks, an item which, like hydroalcoholic gel, has disappeared from the streets of cities like Cannes and Nice. Proof of the vaccine or tests will also no longer be mandatory now.

The atmosphere in the town of the so-called Costa Azul is one of absolute party, as if, in fact, the festival is returning to normal. This 75th year succeeds, after all, a problem still on the alert last year and another non-existent in 2020 — although short film sessions were held later, off-season and without much publicity.

“The mask is not mandatory, nor prohibited. If you feel safer wearing one, so much the better,” he said. Thierry Frémaux, director of the Cannes Film Festival, to journalists who were already present in the French city on Monday. During the last edition, he had to speak publicly in full demonstration to say that the rumors of generalized contamination were “unfounded”.

The choice of this year’s poster illustrates well the feeling of many producers, filmmakers and moviegoers in this 75th edition – it is as if this return to normal left them in the clouds, just like the character of Jim Carrey in “The Truman Show”. In the scene from Peter Weir’s feature film chosen for the poster, he climbs a flight of stairs in awe, realizing that the blue sky that seemed to cover his head was actually a painting on a wall.

“The red carpet leads to the steps of hope to put oneself in the spotlight. It is a poetic celebration of the unparalleled quest for expression and freedom. An upward journey to contemplate the past and move forward towards the promise of a rebirth”, summarized the organization. of the festival, by publicizing the poster.

It is also towards the clouds that one of the great attractions of Cannes this year promises to take its public. the planes of “Top Gun: Maverick” get special screenings on the French Riviera a few days before flying to cinemas around the world, which should make their star, Tom Cruise, one of the most sought-after personalities to parade on the Croisette.

The “Top Gun” fighter planes, however, also hint at a counterpoint to the film party – 2,000 kilometers away, the Ukraine lives under the Russian planes that brought war to the regionwhich, apparently, will not go unnoticed at the Cannes Film Festival.

“We will have a great festival without forgetting what is happening in Ukraine. It is a country that lives under bombs and we absolutely and non-negotiably support the Ukrainian people,” said Frémaux, when asked about the decision of the event. ban Russian official entourages and journalists working for Putin-aligned media, but not films originating from the country. “It’s the government that makes the war, so it’s not contradictory that we show Russian films.”

One of them, out of competition, must be played. “Mariupolis 2”, a documentary whose filming was interrupted after director Mantas Kvedaravicius was captured and murdered by the Russian army, shows families in the occupied city of Mariupol, six years after they were captured by the same filmmaker.

The Cannes Film Festival should not only be painted blue by the sea off the French coast or the sky which illustrates its poster, but also by the Ukrainian flags which, together with the yellow, promise to fly throughout the event. . This is already the case in the cities of the region, which display the flag of the country in the windows of residences, restaurants and large cathedrals.

Another film that should serve as an occasion for the demonstrations is “Tchaikovsky’s wife”, by Kirill Serebrennikov, Putin’s public opponent. In the race for the Palme d’Or, the feature film is centered on the wife of the Russian composer, a sensitive figure for alleged homosexual relations in a country which institutionally condemns homosexuality.

Also in the competitive show are stamped figures from Cannes. David Cronenberg attempts, for the sixth time, to win the Palme d’or, with “Crimes of the future”, another “body horror”, with his regular colleagues Léa Seydoux and Kristen Stewart.

Brothers Jean-Pierre Dardenne and Luc Darden try to pocket one more for the collection of eight awards received at Cannes with “Tori and Lokita”. Hirokazu koreeda, Christian Mungiu and Ruben ostlund are also in the hunt for new Palmes d’Or, with “Broker”, “RMN” and “Triangle of Sadness”, in that order.

Park Chan-wookAli Abbassi, Arnaud desplechinLucas Dont, Albert Serra and Jerzy Skolimowski they have won other awards in the past, but never the main competition. Now they are back in contention with “Decision to Leave”, “Holy Spider”, “Brother and Sister”, “Close”, “Pacification” and “EO”.

One of the films that has generated the most anticipation is “Armageddon Time”, by James Gray, with an all-star cast formed by Anne Hathaway, Anthony Hopkins and Jeremy Strong. They make their debut on the Croisette Saeed Roustayi, from “Leila’s Brothers”, Tarik Saleh, from “Boy from Heaven”, and Charlotte Vandermeersch, who is directing “Le Otto Montagne” with Felix van Groeningen.

She is one of a slim quintet of female directors vying for the Palme d’Or this year, after months of women dominating films and film festivals. Julia Ducournau snatches Cannes with her “Titanium”last winner of the big trophy.

Besides Vandermeersch, Valeria Bruni Tedeschi, Claire Dennis, Kelly Reichard and Léonor Serraille are five of the 23 filmmakers in competition, a fact that has not gone unnoticed by the international press. They lead to the festival “Forever Young”, “Stars at Noon”, “Showing Up” and “Mother and Son”, in that order.

Frémaux, the event’s director, confronted the shortage of women at the main show, talking to an angry press, after hours of technical issues that prevented journalists from withdrawing their credentials from the show. event and to reserve tickets for the films shown. .

“I don’t think there are few women, we had 25% of films directed by them submitted and we have about 25% of films directed by them distributed in the sections,” he replied. “Obviously there will be less competition, because we are talking about great older filmmakers who started their careers at a time when women were making fewer films. In other sections, they appear more. Festivals are the consequence, not the cause. lack of parity.”

The case had already sparked controversy before this afternoon, when the The Deadline portal accused the Cannes Film Festival of having censored excerpts from an interview with Fremaux in which he talked about representation and a possible return to Roman Polanskysentenced for rape, on the Côte d’Azur.

“The festival not only required that it be able to approve the reports as a condition of the interview, but also removed content related to uncomfortable responses,” the portal said. In Cannes, Frémaux declared that there was no kind of censorship, but that he had the right to “control his own speech”. “I can’t change the reporter’s text, but I can change my mind after the conversation,” he said. “It shouldn’t be a complicated question.”

Also in the spotlight in this edition, the out-of-competition “Elvis” films, a new opportunity for the extravagant Baz Luhrmann to paint the Côte d’Azur with his strong reds and his affected visuals, as he had already done. with “Moulin Rouge!” , in 2001, and “Vem Dançar With me”, in 1992, and “Final Cut”, another comedy from the Parisian michael Hazanavicius about cinema itself – but, unlike “The Artist”, this one has zombies.

This year, Brazil found itself with the meager space of a special session for “Deus eo Diabo na Terra do Sol”, by Glauber Rocha, in a restored copy. He also appears in the credits of the production “Armageddon Time”, in the figure of Rodrigo Teixeira, and in the Cannes partnership with É Tudo Verdade, a documentary festival, which once again helps the French to organize the documentary section Cannes Docs .

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