Leonardo DiCaprio, Margot Robbie, and Brad Pitt may have brought the throwback glamour to Cannes, but it’s Marion Cotillard who completely stole the show and the festival in my eyes. The photos and background reactions of her in a midriff-baring Balmain look at the premiere of Xavier Dolan’s Matthias et Maxime are something ELSE.
For all of the hoopla surrounding Cannes’ formalities, especially on the red carpet, Marion is, to quote Jackie Chiles, “flouting society’s conventions” with her second cropped look of the fest. Her first one came at the premiere of La Belle Epoque, which stars her partner Guillaume Canet, earlier this week. But that was black, a Chanel halter two piece with a long ball gown skirt. While it was playful, it also stayed on the traditional side, and was nothing like this Balmain look. A distressed denim kimono, diamond chandelier earrings, a bejeweled bib necklace and above all else… shorts.
Again, going back to Jackie Chiles… I’m sure many would think her look, considering the setting, and this carpet in particular, is “Totally inappropriate. It's lewd, lascivious, salacious, outrageous!” Personally, I love how bold it is. I really could look at these photos for a long time. If anybody could pull this off at Cannes, it’s Marion. But mostly I love that she did this while supporting Xavier. Their film together, It’s Only the End of the World (Just la fin du monde) famously won the Grand Prix (second place) at Cannes back in 2016, which was the last time Xavier attended in competition prior to yesterday. When I saw it at TIFF that year, I wrote that it was an intentionally suffocating family drama, with some standout moments, but that it was not his best work.
Both Marion and fellow It’s Only the End of the World star Gaspard Ulliel were sitting right in front of Xavier during the screening, which got an eight-minute standing ovation. You can see him greet them with kisses here:
La joie de @xavierdolan pour la première mondiale de son film au @Festival_Cannes - et un bisou à Marion Cotillard et Gaspard Ulliel au passage 🔥 #cannes2019 #xavierdolan #Matthiasetmaxime pic.twitter.com/KaazpjPyOg— Stéphanie Chermont (@StephChermont) May 22, 2019
Here are Marion and Xavier the night before, at the Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood bash:
There’s another anniversary here too. Xavier’s first feature I Killed My Mother (J'ai tué ma mère), which he wrote (at 16), directed and starred in, premiered at Cannes in the Director’s Fortnight program 10 years ago, in 2009. He was 20, and directed it at 19. There’s a great story about how Brad Pitt’s team tried to get in touch with Xavier after the film’s premiere because of how much they loved it, but Xavier did not necessarily get back to them in time. Now they both have films in competition at the same festival.
Early buzz on Matthias et Maxime is strong, too. There’s the eight-minute standing ovation yes, in addition to several critics who claim it’s a return to form for Xavier. His English language debut The Death and Life of John F. Donovan remains unreleased in North America after its launch at TIFF in September, and many of us are keeping our fingers crossed for yet another Laurence Anyways, Tom at the Farm and Mommy-style inventive auteur run. Matthias et Maxime, which Xavier also writes, directs and stars in, is a story about two friends whose friendship takes a turn after a romantic advance, is winning over audiences. And as we’ve come to expect from Xavier’s love of Top 40 hits, there’s a yet-to-be-revealed Britney Spears song in the film. It’s tough to call it a comeback for him, since he’s so prolific, but especially in the eyes of critics, it appears Xavier’s back in the good books with one of the longest rounds of applause at Cannes. Even longer than Brad’s film. And you better believe Marion was there cheering Xavier on, even if her outfit stole the show… for now.