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Star-studded Cannes Film Festival about to kick off


05-12-2016 07:14 BJT

At the 69th Cannes Film Festival, 22 films will be showcased, and once again, there is a star-studded lineup of Hollywood’s biggest names, including Julia Roberts, George Clooney, Charlize Theron, Jodie Foster, and Sean Penn.

Cannes Film Festival about to kick off

Cannes Film Festival about to kick off

The 69th Cannes Film Festival has the makings of a vintage edition, as it awaits the arrival of Hollywood royalty for Wednesday’s opening. And Javier Bardem and Charlize Theron are starring in Sean Penn’s “The Last Face.”

For the third time, the festival is opening with a Woody Allen film, “Cafe Society.” Allen is a darling of Cannes, even though he has never been in competition. His film features Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart, who has already been dubbed “Queen of Cannes” by organizers.

“It is nice that Kirsten Stewart has two films in competition here and in the last couple of years. Particularly after the Olivier Assayas film, “The Clouds of Sils Maria,” we all suddenly woke up and realized, even those of us that knew she was a good actress before, we suddenly thought ‘Finally she has got a terrific director, a great script, how nice it is to see her being able to do what we all knew she could do to begin with,’” said variety film critic Jay Weissberg. 

“So is she Queen of Cannes? Maybe this year she is, and that is a nice title for her to have.” 

Several directors in the main competition this year have already won at Cannes before. The Dardenne brothers, who present “The Unknown Girl,” have won the highest distinction, the Palme d’Or, twice. Ken Loach, who is in Cannes with “I, Daniel Blake,” has won it once.

Meanwhile, British director Andrea Arnold’s road trip movie “American Honey” is eagerly awaited.

“One of the films I am very much looking forward to is Andrea Arnold’s film. It is her first film in the United States. It stars Shia Labeouf, which is a hit-or-miss proposition; he is always good for copy of course. But I respect her enormously as a filmmaker, and I think she can do a really fascinating take on what America is,” said Weissberg.

Twenty-one films are in competition for the Palme d’Or prize during the 10-day festival, which runs until May 22.

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