|http://www.sina.com.cn 2005/05/13 13:51 国际在线|
The yachts are scrubbed, the red carpet is unraveled and giant movie posters vie for attention on the seafront. Let Cannes, the world's greatest film festival, begin.
The 58th Festival de Cannes opens on Wednesday in the glamorous Riviera resort, offering up the annual orgy of Hollywood glitz, showbiz excess and a bewildering number of films both in and out of competition.
The biggest event of a packed 12-day program promises to be the sixth and final installment of George Lucas's Star Wars epic, which gets its world premiere in Cannes on Sunday.
While not in the running for this year's coveted Palme d'Or, "Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith" will get the star treatment in recognition of a series that has changed cinema and earned its makers $3.5 billion in ticket sales since 1977.
Also appearing out of competition is Woody Allen, whose "Match Point" is set not in the veteran's favored Manhattan but in London, and stars Scarlett Johansson.
Competing for the main prize are 21 films, and the selection of so many "grands auteurs", or established directors, has been interpreted as a deliberate attempt to put film back in the limelight instead of heated political debate.
Last year the surprise winner of the Palme d'Or was Michael Moore's controversial "Fahrenheit 9/11", which took an angry swipe at U.S. President George W. Bush and his reaction to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.
But Thierry Fremaux, artistic director of the festival, says there was no deliberate promotion of well-known filmmakers.
"Each case is unique and there are no 'rights of entry'," he said of the selection. "If they have been chosen it means that their films won us over by their own merits."
Among previous winners of the Palme d'Or competing this year are Germany's Wim Wenders, whose "Don't Come Knocking" features a down-and-out Western hero looking for redemption, and American Gus Van Sant who is back with "Last Days".
Other heavy-hitters include Canada's David Cronenberg ("A History of Violence"), Denmark's Lars von Trier ("Manderlay"), Israel's Amos Gitai ("Free Zone") and German-born Michael Haneke ("Cache"/"Hidden").
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