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17 May 2023, 09:11

Cannes Film Festival kicking off with Louis XV-period drama


ISTANBUL, 17 May (BelTA - Anadolu Agensy). - The 76th Cannes Film Festival is kicking off on Tuesday with 21 films vying for the Palme d'Or, including Turkish award-winning director Nuri Bilge Ceylan's latest drama, About Dry Grasses (Kuru Otlar Ustune).

The festival which will run until May 27, is opening the night with Louis-XV-period drama Jeanne du Barry, starring Hollywood actor Johnny Depp, and directed by French actress and filmmaker Maiwenn.

Swedish director Ruben Ostlund is serving as the president of this year's nine-member jury, which also features names including Moroccan director Maryam Touzani, French actor Denis Menochet, British-Zambian screenwriter and director Rungano Nyoni, American actress and director Brie Larson, American actor Paul Dano, Afghan author Atiq Rahimi, Argentinian director and screenwriter Damian Szifron` and French director Julia Ducournau.

Ostlund won the Palme d'Or twice, the first being his 2007 film The Square and later last year with the film Triangle of Sadness, co-produced by Turkish public broadcaster TRT.

21 films to compete for Palme d'Or

Türkiye's award-winning director Nuri Bilge Ceylan's entry is among the films vying for the top award at the Cannes Film Festival.

The drama focuses on the story of a young teacher who hopes to be appointed to the Turkish metropolis Istanbul after fulfilling his mandatory duty at a small village in eastern Türkiye.

In 2014, Ceylan won the Palme d'Or at Cannes. In 2009, he served on the main competition jury.

Filmmakers Ken Loach of Britain, Wes Anderson of the US, France's Catherine Breillat, Germany's Wim Wenders, Japan's Kore-eda Hirokazu, and Finland's Aki Kaurismaki are among other film directors whose films will be featured at the festival's 76th edition.

Among the films competing in the main event are also TRT co-productions Club Zero, a thriller by Austrian director Jessica Hausner, and Italian-French-Swiss drama La Chimera by Italian director Alice Rohrwacher.

French union threatens to cut off festival power supply

Last month, French energy unions threatened to cut off the festival's power supply as part of national protests against a pension reform scheme by the government.

While 120,000 people are expected to come to Cannes during the festival, demonstrations are forbidden in the event area until May 28 morning.

The Cannes Film Festival, the first of which was held on Sept. 1-20, 1939, was canceled that year due to the Second World War. After the war, the first Cannes Film Festival was held in 1946, with the Grand Prize presented to the best participating directors until 1954.

The first Palme d'Or in the festival history was awarded to American director Delbert Mann for his film romantic comedy Marty in 1955.

The Palme, made of 24-carat gold, is hand cast into a wax mould, then affixed to a cushion of a single piece of cut crystal and is now presented in a case of blue morocco leather, according to the festival's website.

"Hand-crafted in the Geneva workshops of the celebrated jewellers Chopard in Switzerland by no fewer than seven artisans, and requires over 40 hours of work," it adds.

Renowned Turkish filmmaker Yilmaz Guney, whose works often portrayed working-class people's lives on the big screen, brought the first Palme d'Or to Türkiye in 1982 with his film Yol (The Road). In 2014, Ceylan won the top award with his film Winter Sleep.

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