When in Cannes…

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I’m covering the Cannes Film Festival as a professional journalist. I have a legitimate reason to be here — and a blue badge to prove it. Last night though, it was all about the blagging.

Two nights ago, after the gala screening of Un Certain Regard opener Party Girl, Martin and I decided we would try our luck with blagging our way into the after party. Needless to say, without an invitation, our efforts were fruitless (though we did manage to catch a fireworks show on the Croisette). However, thanks to a fellow journalist from back home in the UK, last night I got to experience the Cannes I’d guiltily been craving — the parties.

My friend and I went to a club on the rooftop terrace of one of the Croisette’s fanciest hotels, where the free cocktails flowed. A reasonably well-known British singer-slash-actress played a short set on the roof terrace, while well-dressed fashion journalists took in the view, lit by the full moon.

We then went on to a beachside soiree hosted by Pamela Anderson and Vivienne Westwood — a bizarre charity benefit that set out to raise awareness about the planet’s depleting resources. Vivienne, elegant as ever, gave an increasingly dull long-winded speech about the pitfalls of capitalism while I lingered by the canapés — sushi and julienned raw vegetables, bien sur.

Before I arrived, a Cannes veteran warned me about the festival’s party scene, emphasising that there is “nothing more annoying than hearing you’ve missed something properly brilliant because you were sitting in the Microsoft Lounge drinking warm rosé with people you will never see again.” As much as I hate to admit it, she was kind of right — while it was fun to take in the experience (and surreal to boot) — there’s something terrifyingly empty about these exclusive evening events. But when in Cannes…

Simran Hans (UK) 

photo by Alexandra Fechete (Romania)

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