Editorial: No need to hide behind the candelabra

The recognition for these two films should ensure they escape the niche trap and are guaranteed an audience among mainstream cinema-goers

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Even as tens of thousands of people protested in Paris against the French government’s legalisation of same-sex marriage, the jury at the Cannes Film Festival was deciding to award this year’s Palme d’Or to Blue is the Warmest Colour, a film by Abdellatif Kechiche, celebrating the love of two women.

Steven Soderbergh’s Behind the Candelabra, about the entertainer Liberace and his lover, was also warmly received.

While it remains to be seen whether the winning film at Cannes will be released in the US and elsewhere without censorship that could diminish its power, and conventional Hollywood funders declined to support the making of Behind the Candelabra, the recognition for these two films should ensure they escape the niche trap and are guaranteed an audience among mainstream cinema-goers. As the jury chairman, Steven Spielberg, said of Blue, this carries “a very positive message”.

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