Art & Entertainment

Vivek Agnihotri, Nandita Das Shares Discontent On Cannes Film Festival: It’s A Festival Of Films, Not Of Clothes

The two filmmakers feel the Cannes Film Festival is now more fixated on glamour, leaving behind the true essence of cinema.

Nandita Das and Vivek Agnihotri

The ongoing 76th edition of the Cannes Film Festival has certainly captivated the audience across the globe, and several Indian celebrities have impressed their fans with their sartorial picks. While some embraced traditional Indian looks, others showcased more modern red carpet looks. Nonetheless, several Indian luminaries have made their dazzling debut at the prestigious Cannes stage.

However, despite all the festivities, two Indian filmmakers – Vivek Agnihotri, Nandita Das, have shared their discontent on the Cannes festival and mentioned how the event is now fixated on fashion, thereby leaving the true essence of cinema somewhat behind.

Renowned actor-turned-director Nandita Das, whose ‘Manto’ (2018) was screened at the 71st edition of the Cannes Film Festival in the “Un Certain Regard” section and, recently shared pictures from her previous Cannes appearances on Instagram, and wrote, “Sadly missing Cannes this year.”

But she added, “Sometimes people seem to forget that it is a festival of films and not of clothes! Considering I can’t show you the amazing films I watched or the conversations I have had or take you back in time when Manto premiered there. Here are a few images through the years in Cannes. And only the ones in Saris as there is a fair amount of chatter about the ‘celebrities who wore saree in Cannes’. Well, it is surely my go-to garment. Simple, elegant and Indian. Least fussy – easy to get in and get out of it!”

“Each of the images has an interesting story behind it but is too long to share. So feel free to make up your own story from the photos you see. And guess the year they are from – 2005, 20013, 2016-2018.”

Similarly, sharing a photo of Bombay Times’ ShowBiz page, filmmaker Vivek Agnihotri expressed his grievance on the demise of the Cannes Film Festival, as he termed it.

“So sad to see the death of the Cannes Film Festival. Most of these are not even actors or have any film showing at Cannes. Films are replaced with fashion. Actors with SM influencers. Film Journalism with… you know what… And FILMMAKERS… who cares about them? Om Shanti,” he tweeted. 

Cannes, which is the world's biggest film festival, was first conceived in 1939 as an alternative to the Venice Film Festival. This year’s festival began on May 16 and will run till May 27.