When is Cannes Film Festival 2023 and what can we expect?

May 11, 2023 - 11:46 AM
The 75th Cannes Film Festival - Photocall after Closing ceremony - Cannes, France, May 28, 2022. Director Tarik Saleh, Best Screenplay award winner for the film "Boy from Heaven", and director Ruben Ostlund, Palme d'Or award winner for the film "Triangle of Sadness", pose. (Reuters/Stephane Mahe/File Photo)

The Cannes Film Festival will roll out its red carpet next week, with Leonardo DiCaprio, Natalie Portman and Harrison Ford among the Hollywood stars expected at the glitzy industry event on the French Riviera.

This year’s festival is the 76th edition of cinema’s biggest showcase, made up of screenings, press conferences and glamorous parties.

Below are some facts about the Cannes Film Festival and this year’s contenders.

What is the Cannes Film Festival and why is it celebrated?

Cannes is the world’s biggest film festival, first conceived in 1939 as an alternative to the then-fascist-influenced Venice Film Festival.

It has been held annually since 1946 except in 1948 and 1950, when it was cancelled due to lack of funds.

The festival is known for its carefully selected programme of films that have gone on to Oscar glory or launched the careers of directors like Quentin Tarantino.

Running alongside it is the world’s biggest film market, drawing more than 12,500 film industry professionals annually.

When is Cannes?

This year’s festival begins on May 16, with French-language film “Jeanne du Barry” starring director Maiwenn and Johnny Depp. It runs until May 27, closing with Pixar’s animation “Elemental”.

What movies have been selected for Cannes 2023?

There are several categories making up the official selection of films shown, the top being the “in competition” movies vying for the Palme d’Or prize.

This year’s 21 contenders are:

  • “Club Zero” by Jessica Hausner
  • “The Zone of Interest” by Jonathan Glazer
  • “Kuolleet Lehdet” (“Fallen Leaves”) by Aki Kaurismaki
  • “Les Filles d’Olfa” (“Four Daughters”) by Kaouther Ben Hania
  • “Asteroid City” by Wes Anderson
  • “Anatomie d’une chute” (“Anatomy of a Fall”) by Justine Triet
  • “Kaibutsu” (“Monster”) by Kore-eda Hirokazu
  • “Il Sol dell’ Avvenire” (“A Brighter Tomorrow”) by Nanni Moretti
  • “L’ete dernier” (“Last Summer”) by Catherine Breillat
  • “Kuru Otlar Ustune” (“About Dry Grasses”) by Nuri Bilge Ceylan
  • “La Chimera” by Alice Rohrwacher
  • “La Passion de Dodin Bouffant” (“The Pot-au-Feu” by Tran Anh Hung
  • “Rapito” (“Kidnapped”) by Marco Bellocchio
  • “May December” by Todd Haynes
  • “Qing Chun” (“Youth”) by Wang Bing
  • “The Old Oak” by Ken Loach
  • “Banel e Adama” by Ramata-Toulaye Sy
  • “Perfect Days” by Wim Wenders
  • “Firebrand” by Karim Aïnouz
  • “Black Flies” by Jean-Stéphane Sauvaire
  • “Le Retour” (“Homecoming”) by Catherine Corsini

Films screening out of competition include Martin Scorsese’s “Killers of the Flower Moon” and Harrison Ford’s return as the famed adventurer in “Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny”.

There are also categories for short films and the art-house film-focused “Un Certain Regard” sidebar section.

What are the prizes and who has won in the past?

Cannes’ top prize is the Palme d’Or, whose past winners include “Taxi Driver”, “Apocalypse Now”, “Pulp Fiction”, “The Pianist” and “Parasite”.

Only two female directors, Jane Campion and Julia Ducournau – have won the prize – for “The Piano” and “Titane,” respectively.

Other awards include the Grand Prix, jury prize, best director, best actor, best actress, best screenplay and best short film.

“Triangle of Sadness” won the Palme d’Or last year.

—Reporting by Marie-Louise Gumuchian;Editing by Bernadette Baum