May 15, 2012
Cannes 2012 Cheat Sheet
Some Like It Haute: Cinema’s Chicest Film Fest
By Nancy Staab
The international glitterati will cruise The Croisette May 16-27 for Cannes 65th Anniversary International Film Festival. Here’s your cheat sheet (or should we say chic sheet?) of the buzziest and most noteworthy films, fashions, celebs and parties to permeate this French Mediterranean playground. And stay tuned for a post-Cannes fashion wrap-up after the 27th –we’re calling it the Cannes Glam Slam.
Lots of high-wattage celebs are predicted to ascend the red-carpeted steps of Palais des Festivals, including official jury members Diane Kruger and Ewan McGregor, The Artist co-star and mistress of ceremonies Bérénice Bejo, and other glamazons such as Nicole Kidman (The Paperboy), Marion Cotillard (Rust and Bone) and Jessica Chastain (Lawless). No doubt Marchesa designer Georgina Chapman will also make an appearance on the arm of her movie producer husband Harvey Weinstein, while fest sponsor L'Oreal is importing beauties Eva Longoria and Freida Pinto.
Several new-gen brat packers also make the list, indicating a tectonic shift in the movie industry’s A-listers, such as On the Road star Kristen Stewart and her beau Robert Pattinson (star of Cosmopolis) as well as Zac Effron who shares a love scene (gasp) with a cougar-like Kidman—the latter in fierce form in The Paperboy (with echoes of her 1995 To Die For role). Given the location there will also be a bevy of French beauties like Juliette Binoche (Cosmopolis) and Audre Tatou (in the closing film Therese D.).
But this year is all about the boys: namely, Brad Pitt the star of Killing Them Softly (alas, without Angelina and her big rock in tow); Shia LaBeouf and Tom Hardy of Lawless, Clive Owen from the non-awards-contention screening of HBO’s Ernest Hemingway biopic Hemingway & Gellhorn costarring Kidman), Bill Murray (Moonrise Kingdom)--who showed up at day one in Cannes in madcap, mismatched Madras prints (parodying the ugly American tourist for laughs?) and Matthew McConaughey (Mud and The Paperboy). Cineastes should also keep an eye out for a sly Alec Baldwin, who will be infiltrating the Cannes scene for his sure-to-be-hilarious, future mocumentary on fame with James Toback (producer of Bugsy ). Not to be outdone, Sacha Baron Cohen is arriving to the fest by (and nearly falling off of-for laughs) a camel in his latest role as the dictator! Lastly, a sprinkling of foreign film stars will lend the perfect je ne sais quois.
Proving that Cannes is a fashion as well as film event, designer Jean Paul Gaultier is serving as one of this year’s board members. Chanel unofficially kicked off the Cannes season of fashion with the recent resort show at Versailles of punked-out Marie Antoinettes and likewise, expect a large Chanel contingent in Cannes with Kruger as a Chanel ambassador and Chanel-fan Kirsten Dunst as an attendee. Other red carpet predictions: Lady Dior bag ambassador Cotillard in Dior, Kidman in Dior and/or L’Wren Scott, Tilda Swinton (a star of Moonrise Kingdom) in Haider Ackermann, Stewart in Balenciaga as the face of that fashion house’s new perfume, and scads of starlets in the fashions of hosts Gucci, Armani and Calvin Klein, to name a few.
In celebration of Chopard’s 15th year as the festival’s sponsor, the house created a 65-piece Red Carpet Collection, including several cascading diamond necklaces. One, inspired by this year's film fest icon Marilyn Monroe, is to be worn by Marilyn Monroe-esque model Eva Herzigova.
Swarovski has created 1,800 pieces specifically for Cannes attendees. Look for French actress Berenice Marlohe, the next James Bond girl, to make an appearance as the new “face” of Swarovski, draped in the house’s signature crystals. Guests at the film festival will be gifted with Swarovski’s special crystal kit, disguised as a day planner. Open up the “book,” and celebs will find a crystallized compact mirror, Starshadow evening bag, and crystal-studded lipsticks, bracelet and earrings.
Hotel Martinez in Monaco seems to be bauble-central with Bulgari, Cartier, Piaget and other luxe houses setting up boutiques to ice the film festival stars.
This year’s festival comprises 56 films from 26 countries. Here’s a list of some of the top, mostly U.S.-based contenders for the Palm d’Or prize. It’s a primarily butch group of films (with no female directors on this year’s roster). Perhaps as a result, or not, many of the films are fairly violent, dark, dystopian and/or testosterone-driven from hit-men and business sharks to reformed convicts and lawless bootleggers. Maybe that’s a reflection of the current zeitgeist but directors should take note that last year’s winner of the Palm d’Or was the light-hearted, effervescent Valentine to the movies, The Artist. Sometimes escapism is the order of the day. In light of that, we project that the magical Beasts of the Southern Wild (an “un certain regarde” entry for emerging filmmakers and winner of Sundance’s Grand Jury Prize for Drama) as the sleeper hit of this year’s fest, with Wes Anderson’s equally idyllic, Norman Rockwell-esque Moonrise Kingdom and the innocence-meets-experience Kerouac flick On the Road as the other audience choice winners. Nontheless, early festival buzz favors Austrian/French entry Amour, a devestating tale of an eldery husband (played by Jean-Louis Trintignant) caring for a wife who is subcumbing to dementia and co-starring the lovely Isabelle Huppert
Moonrise Kingdom (the film festival opener): A twee tale of pre-teen summer campers in love, set in the 1960’s. The killer ensemble cast includes Bill Murray, Frances McDormand, Ed Norton and Bruce Willis. Director: Wes Anderson of The Royal Tenenbaums. (U.S.)
On the Road: An adaptation of Jack Kerouac’s semi-autobiographical, beatnik novel, co-starring Kristen Stewart alongside two relative newbies (Sam Riley and Garrett Hedlund) in the male roles once coveted by Brad Pitt and Johny Depp. Dunst, Viggo Mortensen, Tom Sturridge, Steve Buscemi and Elizabeth Moss round out the ensemble cast. The freewheeling movie was shot across Canada, Mexico, Argentinia, Louisiana, Arizona and San Francisco. We love the quote in the trailer, taken from the book: “The only people that interest me are the mad ones. The ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones that never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn like roman candles across the night.” Director: Walter Salle doing another road movie after his lauded Motorcycle Diaries (Brazil)
Cosmopolis: The film adaptation of master novelist Don Delillo’s grim tale of an apocalyptic day in the life of a billion-dollar, young trader as he cruises the city in a stretch limo. It stars Robert Pattinson alongside Samantha Morton, Binoche, and Paul Giamatti. Director: David Cronenberg of A Dangerous Method.
The Paperboy: A Southern noir tale of two brothers (McConaughey and Effron) investigating a death-row inmate and Kidman as a femme fatale.Director: Lee Daniels of Precious fame. (U.S.)
Rust and Bone: A melodramatic drama about a paraplegic, former killer whale trainer (played by Cotillard) and her love affair with a penniless street fighter who brings her back to life.Director: Jacques Audiard. (France)
Lawless: A true story about Prohibition-era bootleggers-turned-gangsters starring LaBeouf, Hardy and Chastain.Director: John Hillcoat.(Australia)
Killing them Softly: This flick stars that guy Brad Pitt (whose at the top of his game as an actor right now) as a mob enforcer investigating a poker heist in the 1970s. Director: Andrew Dominik of The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford. (Australia.)
Mud: A coming-of-age story about two teenage boys harboring a fugitive (played by McConaughey) trying to get back to his woman (Reese Witherspoon) with shades of the movie “Stand by Me.” Director: Jeff Nichols of Take Shelter. (U.S)
Beasts of the Southern Wild (in the un certain regard category for emerging filmmakers): In the wake of a post-Katrina New Orleans and an ailing father, young HushPuppy sets out on a mythic, magical search for her mother, encountering wild beasts and affirming her love for the bayou and it’s community of residents along the way. Director: Benh Zeitlin (U.S.)
In homage to the 50th anniversary of Marilyn Monroe’s untimely death, The Cannes Film Festival has selected the bottled blonde actress as this year’s official movie poster icon (Faye Dunaway and Juliette Binoche were featured in past years). The poster is a charming black-and-white photo of Monroe blowing out a single candle on a birthday cake. Organizers of the event stated, “The festival is a temple of glamour and Marilyn is its perfect incarnation.” Film fest sponsor Chopard has run with the Monroe motif, not only parading Monroe look-alike/model Eva Herzigova down the runway in a Marilyn-inspired, “Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend” choker, but they are also hosting a special exhibit of 25 intimate, rarely seen photos of Marilyn culled from late photographer Milton H. Greene’s archival collection of images.
Woody Allen, Jerry Lewis (what can we say, the French think Jerry is tres hilarious), John Boorman and the late Claude Miller, whose last film Theresa Desqueyroux closes the film fest, will all be honored in 2012.
Chopard will award the Trophee Chopard May 17 to two rising actors, with a party in the Chopard lounge at Hotel Martinez. Rumor has it that torch singer of the moment, Lana del Rey, will perform at the event.
Armani hosts a gala that benefits Sean Penn’s Haitian Relief Organization and Petra Nemcova’s Happy Hearts Fund on May 18,
Christian Dior will host a party with Elle magazine in honor of French director Jacques Audiard’s Rust and Bone starring Cotillard.
The Independent Filmmakers Project and Calvin Klein Collection host a Women in Film event. On the guest list: Naomi Watts, Ludivine Sagnier, Chastain and Kruger.
Luxe jeweler De Grisogono will throw a gala dinner at Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc in nearby Cap d’Antibes on May 23 hosted by Naomi Watts with entertainment by Taio Cruz.
The Inaugural “Nights in Monaco” Gala hosted by Bill Clinton and Prince Albert to benefit their respective foundations is sure to draw the A-list crowd. The black-tie soiree will take place at Hotel de Paris with a formal dinner by Alain Ducasse and after-dinner entertainment by DJ Ruckus
Gucci is presenting Sergio Leone’s 1984 film classic Once Upon a Time in America, May 18, which it restored in partnership with Martin Scorsese’s Film Foundation. There will also be a Gucci-sponsored dinner at Hotel du Cap May 19 with Vanity Fair magazine. The film’s stars Robert De Niro, Elizabeth McGovern and Jennifer Connelly will be in attendance.
Harvey Wesinstein will host a “mystery evening” with Chopard May 21 (guests will find out the location last minute: perhaps a fancy yacht?)
amfAR’s Cinema Against AIDS charity black-tie will rock the Eden Roc Hotel on May 24, co-chaired by Alec Baldwin, Janet Jackson and Kylie Minogue. Other co-chairs include Milla Jovovich, producer Harvey Weinstein, Bérénice Bejo and her husband/The Artist director Michel Hazanavicus, Bollywood actress Aishwarya Rai and designer Karl Lagerfeld. French fashion editor Carine Roitfield is curating an all-black (bien sur) fashion show for amFAR including pieces by top designers from Chanel, Dior, and Pucci, to name a few.
The Yacht to Hop:
There’s probably lots of flashier and larger yachts on the block, but we have confirmed that Calvin Klein’s 150-foot yacht Palmer Johnson Vantage will be a potential floating party palace during the Cannes Film Fest, complete with chilled Champagne! Also look out for Johnny Depp's baby yacht Vajoliroja and Paul Allen's mega-yacht The Octopus, complete with a helicoptor and submarine. Allen holds a Cannes party every year on his floating behemoth. Meanwhile, for landlubbers, the best hotels for celeb sightings in Monaco remain the illustrious Carlton, Martinez and Majestic Barriére.
The Jet Set can also participate in Monte Carlo’s Formula 1 Grand Prix (May 24-27) with views of the curvy race course from the cafes, yachts and grand hotel balconies. Check into the Jacques Garcia-designed Metropole hotel with new summer garden designed by Herr Karl Lagerfled. Dine at the Philippe Starck-designed A'Trego or Alain Ducasses's Louis XV or the soon-to-open export Cipriani. Play at the pop-up nightclub Billionaire in the Fairmont Monte Carlo.
Or the nautical set can zip over to Venice for America’s Cup’s last stop (before Newport in June) from May 12-20th.