Cannes in a nutshell | Culture| Arts, music and lifestyle reporting from Germany | DW | 15.05.2014
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Cannes in a nutshell

Cannes is one of the world's most important film festivals, but there's much more to the spectacle than movie stars and the red carpet. DW compiled a list of fast facts and trivia about this celebration of cinema.

*The sought-after Palme d'Or is made of 19 leaves, individually handcrafted from 18-carat gold. The trophy is awarded to the best film in the festival's official competition.

*The film festival takes place at the fashionable seaside resort on the Côte d'Azur each May since 1952. Before then it was held in fall, but now the sultry spring weather has become part of the spectacle. Often photo shoots are held in the open air against the historical seaside backdrop.

*The festival has been cancelled four times in its history. It couldn't be held in 1939 because of the outbreak of World War II, and budgetary problems meant it couldn't be held in 1948 and 1950.

*The famous red carpet where celebrities show off their glamorous evening wear is 60 meters long. The plush runway also stretches over the 24 steps leading up to the Palais des Festivals where the movies are screened.

*Actors and directors alike are celebrated and honored at Cannes. The main prize is the Palme d'Or - one of the most coveted awards in the film industry.

*About 60 films are being screened at the 67th Cannes Film Festival this year, 18 of which are running in the official competition for the Palme d'Or. Twenty films are being shown outside the official competition, including the controversial biopic, "Grace of Monaco."

*The Palme d'Or winner is chosen by the jury, which this year is chaired by New Zealand director Jane Campion. Campion is the only female filmmaker to have won the top prize, which she received in 1993 for "The Piano."

*The jury viewed about 1,700 feature films before making the official competition selections. Many of the films that didn't make the cut are screened in special sessions at the festival. For example, the film "Welcome to New York" with Gérard Depardieu as former IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn, is being shown outside the official competition.

*Eight directors have won the Palme d'Or twice: Francis Ford Coppola, Shohei Imamura, Bille August, Emir Kosturica, the Dardenne brothers, Michael Haneke and Alf Sjöberg. No German directors managed to make the official competition list this year.

*12,000 visitors are expected to attend the "Marché du Film," a trade show for the film industry, which takes place parallel to the festival. The market brings together producers, directors, studio executives, sales agents and financiers.

*Around 4,580 journalists are reporting from Cannes this year, while in 1966 only 600 journalists and photographers attended the festival.

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