Today, the Cannes International Film Festival (or, en français: Le Festival International du Film de Cannes) is considered the most popular and most prestigious film festival in the entire world. Annually held in May, it takes place at the Palais des Festivals et de Congrés, which was built specifically to host the festival. This 12-day celebration features the best films of all genres from all around the world; and, being the glamorous and esteemed event that it is, only people with invitations can join in on the fun.
What exactly happens at the festival? There are lots of events that take place in that week, but the main event of the entire festival is The Official Selection where films compete for various prizes like the:
1. Palme d’Or (Golden Palm)—which is given to the best film in competition, and is considered the highest and most prestigious award;
2. Grand Prix (Grand Prize of the Festival)—which is second highest award;
3. Prix du Jury (Jury Prize)—which is third highest award;
4. Prix Un Certain Regard—which is competed for by films that are unique in nature and that seek international recognition and distribution (the films competing in this category are run parallel to those competing for the Palme d’Or);
5. Cinéfondation prizes—which are given to student-made films; and
6. Caméra d’Or (Golden Camera)—which is given to the best first feature film of a director.
The festival has been around for 67 years now, and still continues to be successful because at its core, the festival is all about giving recognition to films that deserve it. Since the festival is a highly publicized event, the films that are showcased have wide audiences that reach even beyond France. And, despite being attended by mostly film professionals, almost anyone can submit a film for viewing, be it a newbie or a veteran, to show that good films can come from anywhere. Though many things have changes about the festival for the many years it has been taking place, it still remains to achieve one thing, and that is passion for cinema.