So, the 2011 Cannes Film Festival is over and quite an eventful couple of weeks it was too – I'll spare you all in the details of the high and lows.
Easily, though, the highest highlight was meeting and speaking with the delectable Euzhan Palcy, director of A Dry White Season which starred Marlon Brando (she was the first and, I believe, the only woman to direct the acting icon) and Sugar Cane Alley, her first and seminal film, which screened at the recently concluded 64th Cannes Film Festival on Saturday 14 May as part of the official Cannes Classic Selection.
Before the screening, Ms Palcy was given a special Cannes Film Festival tribute attended by Frédéric Mitterrand, French Culture Minister.
Whilst in Cannes, I also had the pleasure of sharing time and resources with Dionne C Walker, of Diverse World, an independent curator of film. When Dionne asked if I'd like to participate in an interview she'd secured with Euzhan Palcy, it was an offer I wasn't about to turn down. We met Ms Palcy the day before her Cannes tribute and screening and she was an absolute delight to meet and interview, showing much passion for her life and work, as well as great compassion and respect for others.
On the day of her tribute, she also presented a short film, Moly, which she produced, by new Senegalese writer/director, Moly Kane, in front of an audience of press, public and the French Culture Minister. It was possibly the highest profile exposure of any short film outside competion at this year's festival. Sadly, I lost my flip cam a few days later, so I'm unable to share the standing ovation that Kane received – and, I assure you, it wasn't sympathy applause asMoly was a very well made and touchingly inspiring film.
I am, however, able to share the exclusive interview that Dionne and I secured. Ladies and gentlemen, the highlight of my festival experience, I give you Ms Euzhan Palcy...