Director(s): Jean-Pierre Devillers
The first edition of Cannes Film Festival should have taken place in 1939 : everything was in place, from the film selection – «The Wizard of Oz» by Victor Fleming or «Only Angels have Wings» by Howard Hawks – to the attendance of the most important Hollywood studios and biggest stars of that time: Cary Grant, Robert Cumming, Barbara Stanwick, Ginger Rogers, Michèle Morgan. But with WWII, the founders had to wait until 1946 to realize their dream of a festival of Liberty, of free nations, a powerful opponent to the Venice Film Festival which had become openly fascist under Mussolini.
During 70 years, the festival has remained true to its ideology, following the World’s changes by keeping a total freedom of expression and uncovering new talents.
Honoring avant-garde movements («Roma, ciuta aperta» by Roberto Rossellini, «Les 400 coups» by François Truffaut), not afraid of societal controversies ( Maurice Pialat’s «Sous le soleil de Satan», pro-abortion film «Histoire d’A»), criticizing foreign policies (Michael Moore’s «Fahrenheit 9/11»), Cannes showcases a fresh point of view, where directors gain worldwide recognition overnight with unforgettable titles like «Blue is the Warmest Color», «Pulp Fiction», «Underground», «La Grande Bouffe»… Cannes is, and always will be, the festival of freedom.