- Associated Press - Tuesday, May 23, 2017

CANNES, France (AP) - The Cannes Film Festival paused Tuesday for a moment of silence to honor the victims of the attack at the Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, England.

Thierry Fremaux, director of the festival, led Cannes in a minute of silence from the red-carpet steps of the Palais, the festival’s hub. The moment, he said, was to show solidarity with the victims, their families and the British people.

“We are a festival of peace,” said Fremaux, who was joined by Pierre Lescure, president of the festival, actress Isabelle Huppert and festival employees.

In a statement, festival organizers called Monday’s blast “yet another attack on culture, youth and joyfulness, on our freedom, generosity and tolerance, all things that the Festival and those who make it possible - the artists, professionals and spectators - hold dear.”

Some events were canceled or curtailed due to the blast. Disney canceled a promotional event for “Cars 3.”

The festival also pulled back on some elements of its 70th anniversary, which it was celebrating Tuesday. Fireworks planned for the evening were canceled.

Cannes Mayor David Lisnard assured festivalgoers that security measures were at their highest and that Cannes would continue to carry “the universal message of culture, in a spirit of openness.”

Monday’s bombing was on the minds of many at Cannes.

“It’s devastating, devastating for the families that are going through this now” said Nicole Kidman. “It’s not even to be discussed. It’s just to … pray for them.”

Security has been greater than ever at the festival this year, with increased use of metal detectors and an anti-drone system. Nice, where a cargo truck last July plowed through crowds, killing 86 people, is just 20 miles away.

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