Special Report: Cannes Festival 2002, Report 3

By Moira Sullivan
Movie Magazine International
The 55th Cannes Film Festival of 2002 from May 15 to May 26th was notable for a special
appearance by the Bay Area's own George Lucas.
At Cannes with his out of competition "Star Wars Episode II Attack of the Clones",
you have to hand it to Lucas, he is an original. At the press conference he
applauded theatrical exhibitors in Europe who are open minded and not stonewalled
by the advances of digital film. "I do not raise horses", he said. "I am not in a
beauty contest nor expect to break records with 2,000 less theatres than "Spider
Man ". Fortunately, he said, he is not a corporation and does not have to please
Wall St which is why he is pushing digital film and digital projection. With
digital, he explains, a lot of problems go away. For the first day to 10th week
digital film does not degrade like the chemical process of film. It of course
causes lot of challenges for conventional film people. They would be nervous at a
project with sequels not having Harrison Ford. As far as his future, he feels
that he is coming to an end of making theatrical film and might be making more
towards non-narrative films that are non-linear. a passion he had from the
beginning with the other 'enfants terrible' such as Steven Spielberg, Martin
Scorsese, Francis Ford Coppola.
Martin Scorsese was finally set to present 20 minutes off his forthcoming picture,
"Gangs of New York"at the Grand Théâtre Lumière on May 20. He walked up the
red carpet with Cameron Diaz, Leonardo DiCaprio and producer Harvey Weinstein of Miramax.
Weinstein is concerned that the picture slated for release in February of 2003 is going over
budget, chastising Scorsese who has not made a hit since "Cape Fear". DiCaprio does
not seem to enjoy being a celebrity and looked stiff and controlled.
The Cannes Festival which bestowed awards on Michael Moore for his film on
gun control "Bowling for Columbine" gave the Palm d'or or Golden Palm to veteran
filmmaker Roman Polanski for "The Pianist", a film about the deportation of a
musician to Warsaw. Polanski had been thinking about doing a film in his home
country through the years, where his parents were both put in concentration
camps. It was the most conventional film at the festival and not a favorite among
the critics winning over films they liked such as Canadian David Cronenberg's "Spider" and
Russian Alexander Sokourov's "Russian Ark". Polanski who hasn't had a smash hit in
a long time seemed to bask in the light of the paparazzi, taking in every nano
second of fame. He arrived at the awards ceremony with a grand entourage
including actress wife Emmanuelle Seigner who starred with Johnny Deppe in "The
Ninth Gate". At age 72 Polanski who has not stepped foot in America since the
1970's after being convicted for statutory rape of a 13 year old finally got the
kind of attention most filmmakers dream of, even Woody Allen, the coveted Palme
d'Or. Cannes means different things to different people : a pageant par excellence
that attempts to unite the beauty of the 7th art with the reality of show

This is Moira Sullivan for Movie Magazine International, Stockholm, SWEDEN
More Information:
Cannes Festival 2002, Report 3