Five Things You Didn’t Know About The Cannes Film Festival

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The prestigious Palme d'Or

#1 MAJOR ANNIVERSARY

Festival de Cannes, or The Cannes Film Festival will be celebrating its 70th anniversary this year from May 17 to 28. The annual invitation-only festival first made its debut in 1946, and since then typically commences during May each year. The Palais des Festivals et des Congrès makes the official venue of one of the world’s most glamorous festivals, which spans across 15 days. Of the many accolades awarded to the films, the Palme d'Or is the highest prize.

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#2 PRE-CANNES

Until about 2002, the Cannes Film Festival was instead known as the International Film Festival. Think of the intensely picturesque French Riviera and its glamorous beach resorts that will come to mind when you mention “Cannes” – indeed, it is no surprise that the ingenious name change would generate the tourism industry in the region.

#3 ALTERNATIVE FESTIVAL

Though the International Film Festival (now formerly known as The Cannes Film Festival) was founded in 1946, it was conceptualized as early as 1939 to pose an alternative to the Venice Film Festival.

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A montage of the Cannes Film Festival throughout history

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#4 HUGE BUDGET

Aside from its massive €20 million budget, a modest estimate of which half comes from public funding, over 200,000 guests and fans arrive in the city each year for the glitzy event.

#5 BIG THREE

Of undeniable film festival royalty, the most prestigious are widely considered to be the Cannes Film Festival, Berlin International Film Festival and the Venice Film Festival. The festivals are even deemed the “Big Three”.

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