Faye Dunaway, This Years Poster Girl
The 64th Cannes Film Festival is now under way, it's always been a media circus and much more so nowadays, Cannes is best avoided at the moment, (in 1966 there were 700 journalists covering it, by 2008 this figure rose to 3541) as well as all the celebrities, junkets, journalists and paparazzi the place will also be crawling with wannabes, hookers and celeb spotters, for what it's worth you will not find a parking space!
Jean Gabriel-Domergue's proposed poster for the festival that never was
At the end of the 1930s, shocked by the interference of the fascist governments of Italy and Germany in the selection of films for the Mostra del cinema di Venezia, Jean Zay, the French Minister of National Education, decided to create an international cinematographic festival in France,on the proposal of Philippe Erlanger and the support of the British and Americans. Many towns were proposed as candidates, as Vichy, Biarritz or Algiers, although finally Cannes was the chosen one; thus, Le Festival International de Cannes was born.
In June 1939, Louis Lumière agreed to be the president of the first festival, set to be held from 1 to 30 September 1939. The German attack on Poland on 1 September 1939, followed by the declaration of war against Germany by France and the United Kingdom on 3 September, ended the first edition of the festival before it started.
The festival was relaunched after World War II in 1946, in the old Casino of Cannes, financed by the French Foreign Affairs Ministry and the City of Cannes. Although the initial spirit of the French festival was to compete with its Italian counterpart, a secret agreement took place between both nations, so that they will celebrate their international festivals in alternating years. The first Cannes Festival had a considerable success, so when the Franco-Italian agreement was made public it was heavily criticised and considered as a "capitulation of France"
The Poster for the First Festival
I have been following some of the coverage on French TV and looking at some of the fashions on the internet, once again I am disappointed, the glamour, elegance and fun of it seems to have been replaced by something much more corporate and false, I am probably just being an old cynic after all the objective is and has always been the business of promoting, selling and distributing films, hopefully great European films.
I have found some photographs of the golden age of the Cannes Film Festival and I think the stars of yesteryear were clearly having a lot of good old, genuine fun.
Bella Darvi in front of The Carlton 1956
'The way they were; Natalie and Warren'
Robert Mitchum and friend!
Liza Minnelli and Otto Preminger
John and Yoko
Brian Jones, Anita Pallenburg and Bill Wyman
Peter Fonda, Dennis Hopper and Jack Nicholson promoting Easy Rider.
Things have been a bit hectic round here and I am behind with everyone's posts I am looking forward to reading them and visiting new followers in the next couple of days.