Give Yourself A Chance To Experience The Glitz And Glamour Of The Cannes Film Festival!

The Cannes film festival or ‘le Festival de Cannes’ is one of the most revered, glamorous and popular international film festivals across the world. Having originated in 1946, this festival represents one of the most respected and awaited film awards in the whole film industry, especially in the European film industry. The Cannes festival usually takes place on the ‘Palais des Festivals’ in the town of Cannes, situated in south of France.


Really…..What Is Cannes Film Festival?!

Since 1946 the Cannes Film Festival has been ‘the’ event of the year when it comes to the movie industry! Though several other towns in France were considered for this now prestigious event, Cannes was chosen because this has always been a resort town with a reputation for attracting the rich and famous, so it seemed only fitting that this beautiful town on the French Riviera should be the location of the world’s best known film festival.

Film makers compete for the coveted awards that are given out at this event, and the top prize is the Palme d’Or, or Golden Palm. Twenty films are selected for this grand prize which has been awarded to many famous films across the years including Pulp Fiction, Taxi Driver, and Fahrenheit 9/11.

There are other awards too including a Palme d’Or for Short Films, and prizes for films from around the world that deserve special recognition for their uniqueness.

The event also gives the film world an opportunity to get together and make the many deals that keep the industry alive at the Marche du Film, the busiest film market in the world.


What Can You See At The Cannes Film Festival?

Even though it’s known throughout the world, the film festival is actually a private, non-public event so this means there are no tickets available to get into the special screenings or into the film market, unless you’ve been invited along.

This doesn’t mean you should visit Cannes during the Film Festival though because there are still many things going on that you can enjoy. There’s a public screening on Mace Beach for example, where you can go along and watch a specially selected film which will either be a Cannes Classic or a current film that’s being shown at the festival but is not in competition. This is a fun event, and with Cannes’ reputation for great weather the beach is an excellent place to host this event!

You might just want to come along to the town during the festival for your chance to see some well known celebrities from the movie world. They are often seen posing for photos so you never know who you might come across! While you’re here you can enjoy the beaches, luxury boutique shops, museums, restaurants and more that the town is also famous for.


Visiting The Cannes For The Cannes Film Festival

Cannes Film Festival usually take place between 10th of May and 25rd of May (dates vary annually) during which time the streets of Cannes will be packed with movie stars and movie lovers from around the world! If you want to experience this spectacle there are some wonderful luxurious hotels in Cannes where you can stay including the famous Majestic and Carlton Hotel, or choose a place that’s a little more affordable for the masses!


Film Submission Requirements For Filmmakers

While the Cannes Film Festival submission deadline is the most important date to remember for the filmmaker, it’s equally important to understand what is required for actually submitting the film.

1. The film must comply with the pre-selection conditions – meaning that it cannot have been shown on the Internet, distributed internationally, etc.

2. The online entry form must be completed in its entirety.

3. The film should be sent to the address indicated on the entry form. If it is sent anywhere else, it will not be entered into the competition.

4. You must comply with all Festival rules and regulations.

Providing that you have met the official Cannes Film Festival submission deadline, you can look forward to your film being selected for one of six categories. Unfortunetly, you cannot pick which category your film will be put into unless it is a short film (under 15 minutes in length, including credits). The categories include…

· In Competition
· Un Certain Regard
· Out of Competition
· Special Screening
· Cinefondation
· Short Films

Once your film is entered into its category, then the Jurors take over and are responsible for selecting the films that will receive the coveted Cannes awards. The Jurors are found by the Festivals Board of Directors and are selected based upon their body of work, and amount of respect by their peers.

If your film is good enough to win, these are some of the awards you can look forward to.


The Importance

The Cannes film festival has become one of the biggest film platforms especially for European films. The awards given out in the film festival for topping different sectors of the film industry is certainly one reason to be jealous for a co-worker in the same field. Many films also meet their premiere show at this film festival.




First Cannes Film Festival

It all began on Sept. 1, 1939, but was canceled the next day in response to the beginning of World War II. From Sept. 20 to Oct. 5, 1946, the first official festival was held at a former casino in Cannes, France. Forty-six movies were screened here, and eleven of those films won the Grand Prix of the International Film Festival that year. Famous films that competed in that year included “Notorious” by Alfred Hitchcock, “The Lost Weekend” by Billy Wilder, and “Gilda” by Charles Vidor. Nine other awards in different categories were given, including a prize for best director, the International Jury Prize, and the FIPRESCI Prize.


Palais des Festivals

In 1949, the Cannes festival was held in a new building specially designed for the event. The Palais des Festivals, also called the Palais Croisette, lost its unfinished roof due to high winds the first year it was used. After a few decades, the increased popularity of Cannes led to the need for additional space. In 1979, officials decided to build a new Palais des Festivals. The new building was first used for the 1982 festivities and was expanded in 1999. Currently, the Palais des Festivals has eighteen auditoriums and 25,000 square feet of space for exhibitions.


The Palme d’Or

Until 1954, the top prize conferred at Cannes was the Grand Prix of the International Film Festival. Each year, this award was represented by a different sculpture designed by a contemporary artist. In 1954, officials decided to create the Palme d’Or as a tribute to the coat of arms of the City of Cannes to substitute for the original award. The board of directors for the festival asked jewelers to submit designs for the new award. Lucienne Lazon’s design was chosen, and a trophy was made by artist Sébastien. Director Delbert Mann won the first Palme d’Or in 1955 for his film “Marty.”

Beginning in 1964, Cannes officials decided to award the Grand Prix of the International Film Festival instead of the Palme d’Or. However, the board of directors reversed their decision in 1975 and once again decided to use the Palme d’Or. The 1975 Palme d’Or was modified from the original 1955 version and was presented in a red leather case with a white suede interior. Although the design of Palme d’Or has been modified several times since its 1975 reintroduction, it still retains its iconic leaf design.

Over the years, critically acclaimed directors, such as Roman Polanski, Robert Altman, and Martin Scorsese, have won the Palme d’Or. New Zealand director Jane Campion won a Palme d’Or for her 1993 film “The Piano.” She remains the only female director to win the award.

Six male directors have won the Palme d’Or twice. Francis Ford Copolla won for “The Conversation” in 1974 and “Apocalypse Now” in 1979. Michael Hanake, Emir Kusturica, Bille August, Shoei Imamura, and the Dardenne brothers are the other directors who have achieved this milestone.


Other Prizes

While the Palme d’Or is considered the most prestigious award, twenty films chosen to compete at Cannes can be recognized with one or more of seven other prizes. The Grand Prix, which was once called the Grand Prix Spécial du Jury, was first awarded in 1967. It is considered the second most prestigious award. The Prix du Jury is considered the third most prestigious award and has been awarded continuously since 1969.

Best screenplay, best actor, best actress, best director, and best screenplay prizes are also awarded to other films officially chosen to compete at the festival. Other prizes may be awarded to films other than the twenty chosen to officially compete at Cannes. These prizes include Caméra d’Or for best first feature film and the Cinéfondation prizes for student works.


Lasting Impact

Originally conceived as an alternative to the increasingly fascist Vienna Film Festival, Cannes has grown into one of the largest and most prestigious film festivals in the world. Over 30,000 people visit Cannes in the spring to see some of the year’s best films. Twenty films chosen to compete at Cannes often go on to win Academy Awards, BAFTA Awards, and prizes at other festivals.


Awards distributed

The festival introduces many awards on different sectors of movie making. The sectors can be divided into three categories such as competition, other sections and prizes given out by individual entities. The competition section is by far the most popular among all and consists of prizes such as the Golden Palm, the Grand Prize of Festival, Jury Prize, Best Actor Female, Best Actor Male, Best Director and Best Screenplay. The others section hosts prizes such as Best Feature Film and Student Films etc. There are also some other prizes in other sections.


Maximize Your Cannes Film Festival Experience

Tired or done with the film festival? how about planning and taking yourself on various tours of Cannes? The first place to include on your list is the Palais des Festivals et des Congres. This is the site of the annual Cannes film festival which is always alive with glitz and glamour long after the festival is over. Here, you can attend the many events which take place at the convention center as well as view the handprints of celebrities which are embedded in flagstones outside the building.

La Croissett is another must-see in Cannes as this is the spot that best symbolizes the glamour of the city. This stretch of sidewalk lines the shore and is home to vendors who sell souvenirs, upscale shops and billboards that promote the film festival which are a sight for sore eyes. Here you can buy yourself a drink at the delightful cafes that line the beach, as well as rent a chaise lounge and umbrella to lounge in the sun.

Musee de la Castre is a wonderful chateau in Cannes which has been transformed into a museum that is home to a rich blend of diverse artworks. The tower of this castle is an ideal place to go for a great aerial view of Cannes. Musee de la Mer is yet another unique museum situated off the shores which houses exhibitions devoted to the Cannes prison system as well as underwater archeological collections. Its main highlight is the exhibit devoted to the mysterious man in the iron mask.

If you love to shop, then Cannes is the best place to do it. Visit the shops on La Croisette, as well as those heading north. You should find what you are looking for at the shopping mall, upscale chain stores such as Ferrari and Gucci, as well as the local boutiques. Other ideal shopping spots include the rues Meynadier and d’Antibes.

Enjoy your Cannes Film Festival holidays this year!

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