Cannes Film Festival Will Feature Sean Penn, Wes Anderson

PARIS — Sean Penn is a contender for the highest prize at this 12 months’s Cannes Film Festival, to be held from July 6 to 17, the organizers introduced Thursday. In “Flag Day,” the actor-director performs a con man.

Penn — who was final on the competitors as a director in 2016 with “The Last Face” — shall be up towards a bunch of different headliners for the Palme d’Or: Wes Anderson, whose “The French Dispatch” stars Timothée Chalamet; Nanni Moretti of Italy; Paul Verhoeven of the Netherlands; Leos Carax and François Ozon of France; and Asghar Farhadi of Iran, who directed the Oscar-winning “A Separation.”

This 12 months’s competition was delayed from its typical timing in May due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Last 12 months’s version was canceled. The 2021 version may have 24 motion pictures in competition for the Palme d’Or, greater than typical, mentioned Thierry Frémaux, the competition’s creative director, at a information convention.

The pandemic itself is more likely to be a significant protagonist on the competition.

Unless absolutely vaccinated or presenting proof of immunity, competition attendants must undergo a saliva take a look at each 48 hours at a lab close to the principle competition venue to verify they haven’t caught the virus, organizers mentioned.

Frémaux mentioned that of the greater than 2,000 motion pictures submitted to the competition, some had been shot in lockdown and on cellphones, and a few had characters sporting masks. “In 20 years, younger generations watching these movies will think, ‘Why are they wearing masks?’” he mentioned. “Cinema will bear the traces of this. It will remember this moment.”

Julien Gester, the co-culture editor of the French day by day newspaper Libération, mentioned the movies by Penn and Anderson would carry “prestige and Hollywood glamour” to the Croisette, the seafront drag the place the competition takes place.

He recalled that when Penn was in Cannes for “The Last Face” — a love story about two humanitarian staff in Africa, starring Charlize Theron and Javier Bardem — the film was heckled and booed on the screening and “was completely massacred by the critics.” (In its overview of “The Last Face,” The Times wrote: “As well meaning as this movie is, it is also a turgid, muddled one.”)

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Gester additionally famous that there have been seven French movies on this 12 months’s competitors — almost a 3rd of the total lineup — of which three had been directed by girls.

In whole, there are 4 movies by girls within the competitors. The competition has come beneath fireplace lately for the dearth of feminine contestants; the one lady ever to have gained the Palme d’Or is Jane Campion, for her 1993 movie “The Piano.”

Outside of the competitors for the Palme d’Or, the competition may even current Oliver Stone’s investigation into the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, “JFK Revisited: Through the Looking Glass,” and the primary film directed by the actress Charlotte Gainsbourg, about her mom, the actress and singer Jane Birkin.

As for Netflix productions, there’ll but once more be none on this 12 months’s competition lineup, Frémaux mentioned on the information convention.

Cannes calls for that each one competitors titles be launched in French film theaters, as a part of a regulatory system meant to protect France’s movie trade and hold its cinemas alive. Streaming providers then have to attend as much as three years earlier than they will add motion pictures which have had a theatrical launch to their libraries.

Asked concerning the subject, Frémaux mentioned there have been doubtlessly two Netflix productions that he would have favored to current at Cannes this 12 months, outdoors of the official competitors, however Netflix refused. “We regret this absence, this attitude,” he mentioned.