This Wednesday, a group of Ukrainian filmmakers protested during the Cannes Film Festival against the Russian military invasion of their country.
Before the premiere of Elvis, the filmmakers sounded the air raid sirens, as a reminder that the war has entered its fourth month; they also held translucent squares over their faces with the social media logo when the content is considered sensitive.
Later, they unfurled a banner on the steps of the Palais with the phrase: “The Russians kill the Ukrainians. Do you find it offensive or disturbing to talk about this genocide?”
Among the protesters were the crew of the Butterfly Vision film, consisting of director Maksym Nakonechnyi, producers Darya Bassel and Yelizaveta Smit, and actress Rita Burkovska.
“This is not about coming to Cannes to have fun or coming to Cannes to do business. For us, it’s just about delivering the message to the world,” Bassel told Variety magazine.
Butterfly Vision tells the story of Lilia, a Ukrainian woman in aerial reconnaissance, who returns home to her family after spending months as a prisoner in Donbass, the site of a simmering conflict since 2014.
“When the war started, I realized that the film that we have been making for all these years is not about the past, but about the present,” Bassel said.
“It is a film that tells you the consequences that this war can have,” he added.
Expectation for Elvis
The Cannes Film Festival put on its best red carpet this Wednesday to welcome Elvis, Baz Luhrmann’s film about the so-called King of Rock.
The parade lived up to the hype, with young American actor Austin Butler playing Elvis, accompanied by double Oscar winner Tom Hanks, who plays his manager, Colonel Parker, and the widow herself, Priscilla Presley. .
Elvis covers in an emotional story, over two decades, the beginnings, the glory and the decline of the interpreter, who died in 1977 at the age of 42.
Californian, with a great physical resemblance to the Elvis of the late 50s, Austin Butler, 30, has participated in a dozen films, including Once upon a time… in Hollywood by Quentin Tarantino or The dead don’t die, by Jim Jarmusch.
It was the actor Denzel Washington who recommended the Australian Luhrmann to give Butler a chance for this role, according to the American site Entertainment Weekly.
“I got a video of this young man tearfully performing Unchained Melody (a song that Presley covered) and I was like, ‘What is this?’” Luhrmann explained. “And then I got a message from Denzel Washington, who I didn’t know. He told me ‘I just worked with this guy, I’ve never seen someone so committed’”.
Butler rehearsed for a year to imitate the velvet voice of the Heartbreak Hotel performer.
Elvis arouses expectation because Luhrmann is a director who is not used to being daunted by giants of history, whether it be Shakespeare, of whom he dared to cover Romeo and Juliet, or The Great Gatsby, one of the greatest works of American literature.
The film is “an intense experience,” Elvis’ granddaughter Riley Keough said at Cannes.