Cannes Film Festival delayed to July after 2020 cancellation

The famed Cannes Film Festival, set for May following its coronavirus cancellation last year, will be delayed again, news wires reported. Cannes organisers announced on Wednesday that this year's festival will take place from 6 to 17 July, about two months after its typical period.  The world's most prestigious film festival, which has run for nearly 75 years with few interruptions, is currently hoping the coronavirus recedes enough by summertime.

The festival was cancelled entirely last year for the first time since the Second World War, with just a small online presentation from its official selection in October.

The delay looked increasingly likely in recent weeks, with infection rates still high in France and talk of another lockdown looming. It is another sign of uncertainty for an industry battered by a year of shuttered cinemas, delayed openings and cancelled productions, with many unsure about when the glitz of the red carpet will return to its full pomp.

The postponement sets up a "potential confrontation" with its rival European festival in Venice, scheduled for September, "as the two events compete for the world premieres and red carpet star power", The Hollywood Reporter noted. "The move, while expected, will have a domino effect across the festival circuit. The Venice Film Festival is scheduled to kick off on 1 September. Cannes' new dates mean there will be less than a month between Europe's number one and number two festivals," the industry magazine wrote. The Venice festival managed to go ahead last year under strict health restrictions, taking advantage of a lull in infection rates over the summer.

But the continent's other major cinema event – the Berlin Film Festival – announced last month that it was delaying its industry segment from February to an online version in March, and would postpone its public screenings to June.

More on this subject: Coronavirus

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