| 17°C Dublin

All about Eve as dad a no-show in Cannes

BONO'S daughter stepped out of her father's shadow and into the limelight as she took to the red carpet for a Cannes film premiere.

The Cannes Film Festival is used to launching stars into orbit and last night it was the turn of Eve Hewson.

The 19-year-old daughter of the U2 lead singer stepped on to the red carpet with co-star Sean Penn for the competition entry 'This Must Be The Place'.

Wearing a ravishing Chanel number -- light pink skirt, black bodice and sheer overlay -- Hewson looked very much like a star in the making.

At one point flanked by Penn and Talking Heads singer David Byrne, who scored the movie and makes a cameo appearance singing the title song, Hewson looked relaxed as she arrived. She shared a joke with Penn, and held his hand as he escorted her up the famous steps.

Two-time Oscar winner Penn sported a black suit and tie, though with the collar undone in true rock'n'roll fashion.

With the premiere attended by an array of A-listers, including Gwen Stefani, Rosario Dawson and Faye Dunaway, there were some notable absences.


Hewson was not accompanied by her famous parents, as some expected. Bono, of course, is no stranger to Cannes. In 2007, he and the rest of U2 played at the top of the very same Palais steps to launch the screening of concert movie 'U2 3D'.

Had he and wife Ali Hewson arrived, it would not have been unprecedented. Previously when Hewson's first film 'The 27 Club' premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York in 2008, mother and daughter took to the red carpet together.

But last night, the parents ducked out of the limelight to allow their second-eldest daughter to soak up the acclaim for what is only the second film of a blossoming career. Trade paper 'Variety' praised her performance as "strong".

Directed by Italian Paolo Sorrentino, the film sees Penn play Cheyenne, an ageing Goth rocker living in Dublin. Hewson co-stars as Mary, a tattoo-clad 16-year-old friend.

In one scene, she has to skateboard -- and Hewson admitted she told "a little white lie" to the director during the audition.

"Paolo asked me, 'Can you skateboard?' and I said, 'Yeah, sure, it's easy,' which is untrue!"

In the end, she was coached in New York. "I was wearing helmets -- I looked like a turtle riding around Central Park, it was very embarrassing."

Earlier in the day, a radiant-looking Hewson, dressed in mint green, black and white star-print satin Miu Miu dress, attended the film's official press conference.

Seated next to Sorrentino, conference moderator Henri Behar introduced her by saying: "Her second feature film and I'm sure her first time in Cannes."

Asked if Penn's character rang any bells for her, given her own rock-star parent, she rather demurely said, "No bells."

With most of the questions directed to Penn, the actor commented on working in Dublin: "I had spent a lot of time in Dublin in the past, some 15 years in the past. It was always quite a spunky city. It's suffered a tremendous recession . . . But Ireland's greatest natural resource is, after all, the Irish."

For Hewson, this was her first major exposure to the world's cameras. Growing up in Dublin, Hewson and her three siblings were kept cosseted away from public exposure. Yet, as last night proved, she is more than ready to take to the spotlight.

Irish Independent