Cannes 2012 was the dampest festival in recent memory and one of the more muted. The Croisette – the main sea-front thoroughfare – was as crammed as ever but the European film industry is clearly feeling the pinch. The yachts seemed smaller this year, the restaurants emptier. The sales agents presenting new films in the market grumbled privately that Italian and Spanish distributors simply weren't buying any more.
Bérénice Bejo has until now been restricted to minor mainstream roles and sidekick parts in French farces. But Oscar buzz is growing thanks,somewhat oddly, to a black-and-white throwback to Hollywood's silent era.
A pleasant diversion from the current nastiness is in store, courtesy of Madonna, whose eagerly awaited (if only because everyone expects it to be hilariously awful) Wallis Simpson biopic W.E. will finally get an airing at the Toronto Film Festival next month – once Harvey Weinstein has finished his reportedly extensive re-cut. Madonna's previous brushes with cinema have been less than well received (eg, Swept Away), but a Grazia magazine source has seen an early screening and claims the film is "very pretty" and "looks nice", both of which are up there with "the lighting was good" in the faint praise stakes. Moreover, Ms Madonna has taken a few liberties with the historical record: in the film, Mrs Simpson loses an unborn baby when she is assaulted by her first husband; King Edward spikes the drinks at a party to "ramp up the high-jinks factor"; and the former dances the twist for the latter as he lies on his deathbed. None of these incidents is believed to have occurred. Still, The King's Speech was criticised by some for its inaccuracies, and its director won an Oscar. Stranger things have happened. (Not many, though.)
One of cinema's legends, the French New Wave's irresistible rogue and embodiment of cool, is back. Geoffrey Macnab reports
Bafta winners Carey Mulligan and Colin Firth attended the aftershow bash hosted by The Weinstein Company and Universal Pictures at London's Momo.
Notorious Hollywood reporter accuses film industry of forcing weekly magazine to 'dumb-down' revelatory profile
Flashback: May, 1977. Bianca Jagger, estranged Rolling Stones wife, Interview cover star and party girl par excellence takes to the floor of Studio 54 like a disco Lady Godiva atop a white steed. But unlike Godiva, Jagger is far from naked; instead she is draped in silk jersey, trussed with gold cord and glowing in the barrage of paparazzi flashbulbs. It's a heady cocktail of glamour, sex and celebrity that remains powerful and seductive – even today.
A while ago, Bryan Ferry put his elegantly shod hoof in his mouth by commenting approvingly that the Nazis “knew how to put themselves in the limelight and present themselves”. Now Quentin Tarantino has managed to find something about the Nazis that he too can relate to: some of them could talk the hind legs off a donkey.