Cannes is in full swing as celebrities flock to the French city for another year of the film festival. Alice Rohrwacher, Elle Fanning, Alejandro Gonzalez.
Even before the 2019 Cannes Film Festival began today, there was controversy—comme toujours. Last month, the news that French actor Alain Delon would receive an honorary Palme d’Or was met with immediate protests from women’s rights activists because of Delon’s history of misogynistic and homophobic comments, as well as domestic violence accusations, which the 83-year-old screen legend has denied.
At the opening press conference on Monday, Theirry Frémaux, artistic director of the festival, addressed the decision directly and dismissed any criticism. “We’re not giving the Nobel Peace Prize to Alain Delon,” Frémaux said. “We’re giving him the honorary Palme D’Or for his career as an actor.” He continued, “Nowadays it’s difficult to give awards, to honor someone, because the political police immediately appear. Alain Delon is not perfect. I’m not perfect.”
What is always pretty flawless at Cannes, of course, is the legion of celebrities who come to the French Riviera for one of the most important film festivals of the year. The opening movie—the zombie comedy The Dead Don’t Die by beloved Cannes auteur Jim Jarmusch—features one of the most eclectic casts ever to walk the red carpet, including Bill Murray, Adam Driver, Chloe Sevigny, Tilda Swinton, Selena Gomez, and Tom Waits.
Other celebrities who came out for the opening ceremony include director Alejandro González Iñárritu, president of the jury overseeing the main competition; jury member Elle Fanning (who wore a Gucci gown with Chopard diamonds); Julianne Moore (above, in an emerald Dior gown with matching emerald jewels by Chopard); Alessandra Ambrosio (in a diaphanous Ralph & Russo gown); and Eva Longoria (who wore a custom Alberta Ferretti dress).
In addition to Jarmusch’s The Dead Don’t Die, the pre-festival favorite for the Palme d’Or is Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time . . . in Hollywood, which will have its three stars—Leonardo DiCaprio, Brad Pitt, and Margot Robbie—lighting up the red carpet. The supporting cast isn’t too shabby either, including Al Pacino, Lena Dunham, Damian Lewis and the late Luke Perry.
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