Friday 19 December 2014

Stars shine for 'Grace of Monaco' premiere at Cannes Film Festival

Grace Kelly died following a car crash in 1982 in the hills of the principality, not far from Cannes

Published 14/05/2014 | 22:02

Film fans already were standing outside security cordons with no idea which stars may show up. While security guards are keeping a constant vigil for potential jewel thieves at the 67th Cannes Film Festival.

The Grace Kelly melodrama Grace Of Monaco has kicked off the 67th annual Cannes Film Festival, with classic French Riviera glamour, behind-the-scenes controversy and emphatic boos from critics.

The Hollywood Reporter called the film "a stiff, stagey, thunderingly earnest affair which has generated far more drama off screen than on".

The film stars Nicole Kidman as Kelly during her marriage to Prince Rainier III of Monaco, just an hour's drive down the coast from Cannes.

Grace Of Monaco arrived at the 11-day cinematic extravaganza in southern France amid high-profile disputes.

Director Olivier Dahan has feuded with the Weinstein Company, which is distributing the film in North America, over the final cut.

1955, Elizabeth Taylor
1955, Grace Kelly
1956, Sophia Loren
1966, Catherine Deneuve
1966, Raquel Welch
1974, Jane Birkin
1975, Bianca Jagger
1989, Meryl Streep
1994, Nicole Kidman and Tom Cruise
1995, Sharon Stone
1998, Kate Moss and Johnny Depp
2002, Martin Scorsese, Leonardo DiCaprio and Cameron Diaz
2008, Diane Kruger in Chanel Couture
2009, Eva Longoria in Versace
2010, Elizabeth Banks in Georges Chakra
2010, Kate Beckinsale in Gucci Premiere
2011, Tilda Swinton in Haider Ackermann
2011, Zoe Saldana in Armani Privé
2012, Cheryl Cole in Stephané Rolland
2012, Diane Kruger in Nina Ricci
2012, Doutzen Kroes in Elie Saab
2012, Eva Longoria in Marchesa
2012, Freida Pinto in Versace
2012, Jane Fonda in Stella McCartney
2012, Kirsten Dunst in Dolce & Gabbana
2013, Carey Mulligan in Vionnet
2013, Cindy Crawford in Roberto Cavalli
2013, Marion Cotillard in Alexander McQueen
2013, Rosario-Dawson in Marchesa

But after months of public squabble - Dahan criticised Weinstein co-chairman Harvey Weinstein in the French press - the two sides swept their differences under the red carpet today.

After twice postponing its US release, the Weinstein Company will distribute Dahan's version, albeit for a lesser fee.

"There is only one version of the film," Dahan said, adding that any changes would be made mutually. "There is no longer any dispute. We work well together."

Grace Of Monaco screened for the press early today ahead of its evening premiere and was met with some of the worst reviews for a Cannes opener.

Reporters had wondered if Weinstein would spurn the premiere, causing him to issue a statement saying he was travelling on a long-planned trip. He wished Dahan and the cast "all the best" for the screening.

Princess Stephanie of Monaco has criticised the film about her parents as inaccurate - it is labelled "a fictional account inspired by real events - and has refused to see the movie, judging it by its script.

Kidman called the circumstance "awkward."

"Obviously I feel sad because I think the film has no malice toward the family," said Kidman.

The festival jury, which decides the prestigious Palme d'Or award, is headed this year by Jane Champion, the only female filmmaker to win the Palme, for The Piano in 1993.

Last year, it went to the erotic French coming-of-age tale Blue Is the Warmest Colour. In a first, Steven Spielberg's jury awarded the Palme not just to the director, Abdellatif Kechiche, but also to its two stars, Adele Exarchopoulos and Lea Seydoux.

This year brings a selection of 18 films somewhat light on Hollywood, but heavy on world-class auteurs, including Jean-Luc Godard, Ken Loach, the Dardenne brothers, Mike Leigh and Michel Hazanavicius, returning to where his film The Artist became a sensation.

Two films come from Americans: the Olympic wrestler drama Foxcatcher, by Bennett Miller, starring Channing Tatum and Steve Carell; and the western The Homesman, the second directing effort from Tommy Lee Jones.

Canadian filmmakers outnumber their North American neighbours: David Cronenberg's Maps To The Stars, Atom Egoyan's The Captives and Xavier Dolan's Mommy.

Press Association

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