“Violence against women or the planet that has become trash shake up a Cannes Festival used to living in its own bubble”

VSAnnes was built on the violence of the on-screen world and the glitter off it, a few glamorous films and many other radicals. If the cocktail of opposites remains a winner, this edition, which ends on Saturday May 27, contains a unique aroma. Social issues no longer only appear in the works, they shake up the Festival itself, so accustomed to living in its own bubble. This existential emotion echoes the words of Jean-Luc Godard during the Cannes of May 1968: “I talk to you about solidarity with workers and students and you talk to me about tracking shots and close-ups. You are jerks! »

For ten days, we have been debating a lot in Cannes about the attacks on women in the cinema, about a planet that has become a trash can, about poorly shared wealth. Not to mention the social networks fond of controversy. This climate, which makes Cannes as much a theater of accusations as of an accused, infuses everywhere, to the point that the actors and actresses, filmmakers or producers present must talk about it, even if it means relegating films and aesthetics to the second curtain. .

The opening screening of Jeanne du Barry, by Maïwenn, set the tone. It was less a question of the form of the film, or the audacity of the courtesan, than of Johnny Depp. Not of the actor in Louis XV but of a man who came out of a defamation lawsuit he brought against his ex-wife Amber Heard, the members of the couple accusing each other of domestic violence. Through texts, forums, posters and so on, this film interfered with the beginning of the Festival on a theme that reflects the subtlety of the exchanges: Cannes would be a festival of rapists.

Read also: Article reserved for our subscribers “Jeanne du Barry”, at the 2023 Cannes Film Festival: at the court of King Louis XV, Maïwenn in the reflection of the favorite

With such a compatriot on the screen, the American press spoke a lot Jeanne du Barry but less to accuse Cannes than to note the deep gap between an America which no longer makes the distinction between the artist and the man and a creative France which is torn on the question. In the United States, Depp is blacklisted. Fired in 2020 from the franchise Fantastic Beaststhen a project Pirates of the Caribbean, he has not shot in Hollywood for three years. And nothing says that Jeanne du Barry sort in the country.

Star hypocrisy

In France, the actor was put back in the saddle by Cannes, which considered that a non-conviction takes precedence over a reputation, then applauded at length at the end of the screening, and the film counted 400,000 admissions in the process. eight days, which is a good score, confirming the gap between the public and societal alerts. Depp has just resigned a contract worth 20 million dollars (18.6 million euros) with the Dior brand, and he is preparing, as a filmmaker, to shoot a film in Paris on the painter Modigliani, with the cast Al Pacino and Pierre Niney. In short, enough to fan the flames around him.

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