- Associated Press - Monday, May 18, 2015

CANNES, France (AP) - Andie MacDowell has been coming to Cannes for some 30 years, and she still knows how to slay on a red carpet.

The actress and her show-stopping gown reigned as one of the highlights of Day Six at the Cannes Film Festival, a day where we also learned not to try and set up Colin Farrell for romance, John Turturro’s inspiration for his temperamental character, and why amfAR is counting on Jeff Koons for big bucks.

Here’s a look at what our Associated Press reporters at the Cannes Film Festival found out on Monday, as we reach the halfway point of the event:


A radiant Andie MacDowell went for some old-fashioned va-va-voom in an Elie Saab gown in coral on the Cannes red carpet.

The 57-year-old “Cedar Cove” actress wore a cinched column look for the Monday evening premiere of Pixar’s latest offering, “Inside Out.”

The setting sun glistened warmly off the gown’s sparkling embellishments, and a daring deep V-neckline oozed sensuality and confidence. MacDowell, who is in the “Magic Mike” sequel,” outshone many actresses half her age - quite the accomplishment, given the star wattage at this film festival on the French Riviera.

-By Thomas Adamson, https://www.twitter.com/thomasadamsonap


In his new sci-fi movie “The Lobster,” Colin Farrell plays a single man desperate to get into a committed relationship or risk being transformed into an animal. In real life, though, he’s unattached - and in no rush to change his status.

“In my life I’ve had relationships with women that weren’t in the public eye that have been pulled into the public eye as a result of the nonsense of celebrity and being close to me, and I hate that and I hated that for them,” he said in an interview last week. “And so that would be just another thing that would lead into my reticence to being in a relationship.”

Farrell is in Cannes to promote “The Lobster,” which is competing for the festival’s top prize, the Palme d’Or.

The film is about single people who are forced to stay in a hotel until they find a mate. They have 45 days to find a partner or face being transformed into an animal and be released into the woods.

The 38-year-old actor said being in a relationship isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.

“I have one friend who just broke up and he’s been in a relationship for six years, and before that he was married for 15 years, and he just broke up and our other shared friends who are in relationships are doggedly pursuing him - ‘I have this person you have to meet,’” he said. “But I’m just like, ‘Just let him (rest.)’ And part of me goes, ‘Is that misery loves company?’”


John Turturro drew on three decades of experience in the movie business for his role as a disruptive, egomaniacal actor in Nanni Moretti’s Cannes entry “My Mother.” But he won’t name names.

“I’ve seen behavior way more extreme than that,” Turturro said of his character, an American star who wreaks havoc on the set of an Italian workplace drama. “From lots of people. And from directors, too.”

Moretti’s tragicomedy, one of 19 competing for Cannes’ Palme d’Or, centers on a director (Margherita Buy) whose latest project is coming unstuck even as her mother is dying.

Turturro provides much of the film’s humor as Barry Huggins, who propositions his director almost as soon as he steps off the train, struggles with his Italian dialogue and tells self-aggrandizing anecdotes about working with Stanley Kubrick.

The film is a poignant meditation on losing a parent, and also provides a sharp insider’s view of the movie business, with its egos and foibles.

“I’ve seen all kinds of crazy behavior,” said Turturro, who won Cannes’ best-actor prize in 1991 for “Barton Fink.” That film’s directors, Joel and Ethan Coen, head this year’s Cannes jury.

“People are thrown together, a high-pressure situation. There is a vulnerability factor there.

“Also, people are lonely. They’re unmoored from their families, from reality, and they can become crazy, and very needy.

“You can fall madly in love with someone while you’re acting with them, but you don’t really know the person at all. You’re just in this make-believe world. And sometimes people do consummate that, and it usually turns out to be a disaster.”

-By Jill Lawless, https://Twitter.com/JillLawless


Swanky bashes go hand-in-hand with film festivals, and no more so than in Cannes, where the French Riviera and the luxurious surroundings are the perfect backdrop for the glitzy jetset.

One of the more fancy events occurred over the weekend, as David Unger, co-CEO of Three Six Zero Entertainment, held a brunch in a swanky home in the mountains outside of Cannes. Sunday’s setting was so remote that guests - who included top models and Hollywood producers, directors and agents - were transported to the location via an Uber helicopter.

There have also been many yacht soirees and of course, film premiere after-parties. “Carol,” a 1950s lesbian drama starring Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara, received raves at its Monday premiere; afterward, the two co-stars changed from their red carpet ball gown attire to more relaxing but still glamourous attire and huddled up in a private area at the Grey Goose party as guards kept pesky guests seeking selfies with the stars away.

On Tuesday, the cast of Disney’s “Inside Out,” which also has gotten a glowing response in Cannes, partied until the late night in a lavish bash on the water.

__Nekesa Mumbi Moody, https://www.twitter.com/nekesamumbi


Chinese actress Li Bing Bing is a superstar in her native land, but she only recently started becoming more well known to American audiences.

Her co-starring role in “Transformers 4: Age of Extinction” helped solidify her success overseas. But she doesn’t feel the need to go to Hollywood, since Hollywood is coming to China these days.

“There’s a shift in the global movie box office. China is a huge box office market,” she said, pointing to the blockbuster success of “Transformers 4” and “Fast and Furious 7” in China.

“I don’t know the exact numbers but it shook up Hollywood. Both of the films made more money in China than they did in the US. The world is changing and a lot of things are leaning towards this part of the world,” Li said. “So it doesn’t matter if we go (to Hollywood), or they come to us, for sure you will see more collaborations in the future.”

The 42-year-old actress spoke during an interview at the festival; she is one of L’Oreal’s many celebrity ambassadors at the event.


Jeff Koons is about to generate some major cash for AIDS charity amfAR: He’s agreed to auction off his massive “Coloring Book” sculpture for the group’s annual gala outside Cannes this week.

The sculpture, which has been on display in London and in Beverly Hills, is made of mirror-polished stainless steel with transparent color coating. It is part of Koons’ “Celebration” series, which also includes “Balloon Dog” - sold for $58 million in 2013 as the most expensive artwork by a living artist.

Organizers at amfAR are hoping “Coloring Book” can generate similar numbers for its Thursday gala at Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc, just outside of Cannes in d’Antibes.

The artwork will be on display for the guests, which include top celebrities, in case they want to check it out before they purchase it.

Last year Damien Hirst’s gilded woolly mammoth art piece raised $15 million for the charity.

The annual amfAR “Cinema Against AIDS” gala is the glitziest event during the Cannes Film Festival.


EDITOR’S NOTE - “Cannes Watch” brings you the excitement of the Cannes Film Festival and related events through the reporting of AP journalists on the ground. Follow them on Twitter with the handles listed after each item. Longer versions of most items have also moved.

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