News of the world is upstaging the art
CANNES, France — Has reality hit Cannes? Despite the requisite amount of pomp, circumstance, celebration and silliness, one of the most marked characteristics of the festival thus far is how the real world keeps creeping in among the art and artifice.
For example, the face of 4year-old Madeleine McCann, the missing British girl who made headlines last week when a reward was put up by such celebrities as airline owner Richard Branson and author J.K. Rowling, is plastered all over town.
On multilingual fliers, the blaring headline “Look Into My Eyes!” is superimposed over her cherubic face with a plea to contact British charity Crimestoppers with any information on her abduction. Actor Daniel Craig has even agreed to wear a yellow ribbon in support of the cause when he hits town this weekend.
Further, French authorities blocked a Cannes market-destined film called “Last Looks” from entering the country because the film is purported to show the deaths of cast and crew members during the shooting of U.S. indie horror film “The Evil Eye” last summer. Outside the famed Palais des Festivals, fliers are being handed out encouraging a boycott of the movie.
During Wednesday’s jury news conference, jury president Stephen Frears and actors Maggie Cheung, Toni Collette, Michel Piccoli and Sarah Polley fielded some questions, but the big excitement was reserved for Nobel Prize-winning author Orhan Pamuk.
Journalists lavished Pamuk with praise and lobbed questions at the Turkish writer about his views on France’s new president and the European Union’s position on Turkey.
Still, star-wattage has been pretty strong so far with the casts of “My Blueberry Nights” and “Zodiac” in town, Moby playing at a party on opening night, Pamela Anderson tub-thumping “Blonde and Blonder” and the no-longer-blond Jessica Simpson in town Friday evening to launch her latest film.