Cannes Film Festival opens, Kenyan delegation represented


The 66th annual Cannes Film Festival opened on Wednesday in the eponymous city of Cannes, France. The festival, possibly the most prestigious of its kind in the world, opened with the Baz Luhrmann directed film The Great Gatsby, starring Leonardo Dicaprio. Director Steven Spielberg was announced as the head of the jury for the main competition.

Chris Foot, the Chairman of the Kenyan Film Commission and his delegation have also arrived in Cannes.  Foot shared on Wednesday through social media platformTwitter that his delegation was ready to showcase Kenya as the film destination in Africa.

For the first time, Kenya will be highlighted with a national pavilion at the Cannes International Film Market with the opportunity to showcase and promote its work to international filmmakers, producers and distributors.

French actress Audrey Tautou is the host of the opening and closing ceremonies of the festival which previews new films of all genres, including documentaries, from around the world. It is an invite only event.

Contenders for this year’s Palme d’Or (Golden Palm), the highest prize awarded at the festival, include Chinese director Jia Zhangke’s new film “A Touch of Sin”, Steven Soderbergh’s “Behind the Candelabra”, and the Coen brothers’ “Inside Llewyn Davis”. In total, 19 films have been nominated for the award which is presented to the director of the best feature film of the official competition. Past winners of the Palme d’Or include the Brad Pitt starring Tree of Life in 2011, the 1994 Quentin Tarantino hit Pulp Fiction and the 1976 Martin Scorcese thriller Taxi Driver.

This year’s film poster features veteran actor Paul Newman and his wife, the actress Joanne Woodward, locked in an upside down kiss. The 12 day festival concludes on the 26th of May, 2013.

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