Cannes has been eager to make up for lost time. The storied French film festival, which couldn’t go ahead as planned last year as a result of the coronavirus crisis, finally returned to the Riviera on 6 July. Among the films to have made their long-awaited debuts is Wes Anderson’s pastel-hued comedy The French Dispatch, Leos Carax’s beautifully bizarre musical Annette, Paul Verhoeven’s salacious thriller Benedetta and Joanna Hogg’s sweeping coming-of-age saga The Souvenir Part II.
Then there’s the fashion: a string of showstopping ball gowns spotted on the likes of Tilda Swinton, Bella Hadid, Isabelle Huppert, Jessica Chastain and Carla Bruni, which prove that Cannes is one of the few remaining showcases where high-octane glamour and artistic excellence go hand in hand.
As the 74th edition approaches its conclusion, photographer Greg Williams gives us an exclusive look backstage as the industry’s leading lights from Hollywood and beyond take time out in their hotel rooms, balconies and bars in between the whirlwind of screenings and red-carpet appearances. There’s Matt Damon enjoying a well-earned rest, Sean Penn and Vicky Krieps spending quality time with their respective families, and Bill Murray providing a masterclass in surreal post-pandemic style. The message is clear: Cannes is back and it’s better than ever.