Leading Article: Le crunch

It is said that next month's Cannes Film Festival will be a more austere event than in previous years. The mind boggles at what this might mean for this annual gathering of the wealthy, pouting and famous on the shores of the Mediterranean.

Will the glittering Palme d'Or be replaced by a chocolate statuette covered with gold foil? Will those luxury yachts be swapped for practical dinghies?

Will guests be turned away in the lobby of the Majestic Barrière and furnished with directions to a Provencal campsite? Will the beauties of La Croisette promenade in long skirts to reflect our straitened global economic circumstances?

We rather suspect that austerity à la Cannes will still turn out to be pretty close to what most of us call luxury.

Although perhaps festival-goers will selflessly limit themselves to a single crate of caviar per evening. After all, there is a recession on.