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Movies set in Cannes

By Susan King, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer

The Cannes Film Festival, which was founded in 1939, is one of the most influential and popular international film festivals. The beautiful, the famous and the infamous flock to the private festival, which is held annually in May at the Palais des Festival et des Congrés in the resort town in the south of France.

Not only do films receive star-studded red carpet premieres at Cannes and vie for prizes, including the prestigious Palme d’Or, filmmakers have frequently used the colorful beach city as a backdrop for their features. Even HBO’s comedy “Entourage” went to Cannes to shoot a season finale.

Here’s a look at some films that have used Cannes as its backlot. (Fred Dufour / AP)
Rowan Atkinson reprised his endearing role as the bumbling Mr. Bean in this 2007 comedy, which finds the British misfit winning a rail trip to Cannes. Of course, nothing goes smoothly. In fact, he causes all sorts of problems when through a series of circumstances he finds himself helping the young son of a Cannes Festival Jury member reunited with dad during a premiere of a movie at the festival. Cannes festival president Gilles Jacob is a huge fan of Mr. Bean and allowed the production to become the first ever to shoot on the red carpet during an entry’s premiere. (Giles Keyte / Universal Pictures)
Though E! Entertainment Television is best known these days for reality shows like “The Girls Next Door” and specials such as “The E! True Hollywood Story,” the cable network did delve into the world of TV movies, including this 2000 comedy caper starring French Stewart, Karina Lombard and Stewart’s real-life wife, Katherine LaNasa. Though there is some establishing footage of Cannes that was shot during the 2000 festival, the majority of the film was lensed in Vancouver. (Chris Helcermanas - Benge / E! Network)
Brian De Palma directed this uneven, outlandish 2002 thriller starring Rebecca Romijn — then known as Rebecca Romijn-Stamos — as Laure Ash, a thief who steals $10 million worth of diamonds off of a beautiful supermodel attending a premiere at the Palais du Cinema by seducing her in the restroom of the theater. Though the robbery in “Femme Fatale” supposedly takes place at the 2001 festival, the film being premiered is “East-West,” which was unveiled in the 1999 edition of Cannes. So De Palma re-created the premiere, with the film’s director, Régis Wargnier, and star, Sandrine Bonnaire, on hand as themselves. (Etienne George / Warner Bros.)
Indie filmmaker Henry Jaglom captures the sights, sounds, craziness and the wheeling and dealing of the movie festival in this 2002 comedy, which he shot during the 2000 festivities. Anouk Aimee plays a veteran French actress who has been offered a lead role in an independent film and a small role in a big film financed by a Hollywood sleazoid (Ron Silver). The film features practically every iconic Cannes location, including the Carlton Terrace, the Palais du Festival, the Croisette and the cabanas at the Hotel du Cap. (Rainbow Film Company)
The famous French sex kitten heads to the festival in this 1980 “unofficial” sequel in the long-running soft-corn porn series. This time around, Olinka Hardiman plays Emmanuelle, a young stripper who dreams of becoming a big movie star. So she leaves her pimp and heads to Cannes. During her stay, she ends up dancing naked on the beach and has a lesbian affair with a director before landing a part in the movie. According to the reviews, though, the majority of the film finds Emmanuelle supplying a silly-billy voice-over while walking through the streets of Cannes. ()
Michael Ritchie directed this 1979 romantic comedy starring Keith Carradine in his scruffy, bean-pole era as a young filmmaker attempting to sell his first effort. Italian actress Monica Vitti plays the wife of a movie mogul (Raf Vallone) who falls in love with Carradine. Ritchie shot during the 1978 festival using the Carlton Hotel, among other locales in the city. But according to Janet Maslin in her New York Times review: “The film festival becomes a backdrop and not much more.... In any case, whenever the scene shifts to the festival in overview, Mr. Carradine, Miss Vitti and their spooning are sorely missed.” ()