Finally, I got out of JFK four hours late on a nine-hour non-stop to Nice, along with Oliver Stone (sporting a neat mustache), USA Today's Anthony Breznican, the NYFF's Richard Pena, Richard and Mary Corliss, Village Voice's Jim Hoberman, Moving Pictures Magazine critic Aaron Hillis, indieWIRE critic Eric Kohn, Hollywood Elsewhere's Jeffrey Wells, Wash. Post critic Ann Hornaday, Boston Globe's Wesley Morris, and Screen's Howard Feinstein.
After a smooth flight and various travails with shuttle buses, a group of us piled into a pair of cabs, and after lugging valises to our abodes and picking up pink, white or blue press badges, we assembled at Le Pizza to share pizza and vin rose, an annual ritual. Hot topics: the Berneys leaving Apparition and future plans--Newmarket? Weinstein/Miramax? (in any case that announcement will be splashy)--the Cameron/Clegg show in Britain, Michael Wolff and Newser, USA Today and On Demand, and Casey Affleck's Borat-style The Lost Year of Joaquin Phoenix, which screened for buyers last week and is either a genius send-up or very sad, and should wind up acquired by IFC or Magnolia.
Wednesday brings an early morning indieWIRE confab, Robin Hood press screening and conference (which Ridley Scott will not attend due to healing knee surgery) and a later after-party on the Majestic Beach. I was lined up for a one-on-one with Mark Strong, but it went up against the conference--what if Russell Crowe misbehaves? I must be there. Basically, more and more movie marketers are favoring international press, so we will all have to hustle for access this year.
[Photo of Cannes shuttle bus gang by Jeffrey Wells: left to right, Aaron Hillis, Eric Kohn, Ann Hornaday, me, and Anthony Breznican]