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Cannes 2009: Pics and Video

Photo of Anne Thompson By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood May 31, 2009 at 7:53AM

During my nine days at Cannes, I shot more pics and video than I used. I was hoping to shoot more one-on-one interviews, but wound up at round-tables where they wouldn't let me flip out the cam. At press conferences, security people kept shutting my flip cam down, even after I had obtained permission from both the print and video press attaches. You had to get pretty close to get anything decent. The worst press conference to get into was Inglourious Basterds, where a jam of disgruntled press with lesser badges tried to talk security into letting them in.
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During my nine days at Cannes, I shot more pics and video than I used. I was hoping to shoot more one-on-one interviews, but wound up at round-tables where they wouldn't let me flip out the cam. At press conferences, security people kept shutting my flip cam down, even after I had obtained permission from both the print and video press attaches. You had to get pretty close to get anything decent. The worst press conference to get into was Inglourious Basterds, where a jam of disgruntled press with lesser badges tried to talk security into letting them in.

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Here's a gallery of leftover photos and videos I didn't use, just for fun and flavor. I shot a picture over a breakfast omelette on the Rue d'Antibes of this young actor who had traveled down from Paris to experience his first Cannes, alone. Just getting into a screening was major triumph for him. He was lovely.

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The Carlton Terrace is always hopping, even in a down year. Disney threw a balloon photo op and the opening night party for Up on the Carlton Beach and pier. Universal, Fox and Sony are also based there; SPC's Tom Bernard has always ridden around Cannes on a bike; this year I also spotted Fox co-chairman Jim Gianopoulos two-wheeling down the crowded Croisette.

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If I didn't make it to a given press conference, I shot photos from the constant loop on the flat-screen monitors in the Palais. Andrea Arnold returned for her second Cannes with Fish Tank; Pedro Almodovar's gorgeous Broken Embraces poster was plastered all over the city.

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For the press covering Cannes, there were fewer pleasant press lunches and less sleep than ever. The Wrap's Sharon Waxman and USA Today's Anthony Bresnican both covered the Taking Woodstock press lunch. There were also fewer over-the-top lavish parties--this year I didn't go to any fetes off the Croisette, at a villa up in the hills, or outside the city. One of the best parties was beachside, for Agora, where I hung out with Darren Aronofsky while his partner Rachel Weisz posed for photos.

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The red carpet event every night attracts thousands of onloookers who crowd the streets and yell when they see stars. The photographers and TV cameras line up in their tuxes to shoot the arrivals. On opening night, little girls in tutus lined up on both sides of the red carpet.

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I shot some footage from across the street from the Palais' Theatre Lumiere on the gala night for Broken Embraces. You can see the arrivals as they pose for the photographers and ascend the steps:


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It rained one day, on the Toronto Film Festival party, hosted by co-director Cameron Bailey. Per usual, Cinetic Media's Matt Dentler was blogging the fest.

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Not to bore you with tourist video (watch at your own risk), on my last day, I flip cammed the restaurant row on the Rue St. Antoine in Le Suquet, off the Old Port.


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This article is related to: Festivals, Cannes


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Thompson on Hollywood

Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.