Wes Anderson’s Asteroid City premiered at the Cannes Film Festival last night to largely positive reviews. The film is rated at 86% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes so far and several critics have said that this is his best work since The Grand Budapest Hotel which, to me, basically translates to if you love Wes Anderson movies, you will LOVE this Wes Anderson movie. 


I did actually quite like Grand Budapest, so I’ll go in with those expectations – the signature visuals, the attention to detail, the offbeat humour, and also…of course… the pretention. What would a Wes Anderson project be without that pretention, and especially this time since the story is a play within a play, with actors playing actors, or actor-adjacent, and all of them led by a Movie Star, in the play-play and in real life, Scarlett Johansson. 

Wes wrote the script specifically for her, understandably. Scarjo is totally a Movie Star. And she told Variety about her approach to the character:

“I was curious: Who is this person? How did she get here, to be so successful at that time? She’s this star of stage and screen — what drove her there?”  


You might ask the same of Scarlett. We’re dealing with some super meta sh-t here and that’s why she was asked about that line between art and reality during the press conference today. 

Was she playing herself playing herself or was she playing a version of herself based on the Movie Stars who came before her? 


Scarjo is right, this is too deep, but she does mention, a couple of times, how long she’s been at this – a child actor who became one of the biggest movie stars of her generation; as Variety notes in her cover story last month, Scarjo is Hollywood’s highest grossing star, male or female, and a two-time Oscar nominee. Which is one of the reasons why she took on Disney a couple of years ago, suing them for breach of contract over Black Widow. And as Sarah said at the time, it’s too easy and lazy, frankly, to just wave that off as rich people problems. Scarjo is wealthy compared to the rest of us, but she still took on a whole ass f-cking conglomerate that initially mobilised their might against her, releasing a statement that basically called her greedy and ungrateful. And yet, in the end, she got a settlement out of them that was reportedly worth upwards of $40 million. Which she probably considers a win for sure since she remains a lifelong fan of Disney and will continue to work with them and doesn’t have a gag order imposed where she can’t talk about the case. 


So that’s the kind of energy that Scarlett is bringing into Asteroid City in the lead role and that’s the energy she was serving on the carpet last night with Colin Jost, who’s joined her for the trip since he’s not working because of the writers’ strike. Not surprisingly, given her own lawsuit against Disney, and since she’s married to a writer, she’s with the writers. And she and her writer-husband seemed to dial up the love vibes for the cameras, like they’re doing a Brange cosplay from Cannes back in the day, except Colin could use more practice, lol. 

Scarlett is wearing custom Prada at the premiere. I don’t love it, because I never love when Prada does pink (see Anne Hathaway at the Oscars) but if there’s anyone who can pull off a look like this, it’s her.