How Long Is Cannes Film Festival?

How Long is Cannes Film Festival? This article apprises readers about this topic. If you are a film lover or associated with film industry, then you must hear about this film festival.

But, if you are not a cinema person then may be you don’t hear about it.


No matter! I am here to apprise you about the history and all other related facts with this Film Festival. If you knew nothing about it, you can utilize this reading time. Here we go….


Cannes Film Festival is one of the oldest and most influential film events in the world. It is an annual film festival held in Cannes which is a seaside resort town in France. Generally the duration of this Film Festival is 12 days. For 12 days each May, the city of Cannes transformed from a quiet seaside resort into a frequent hub for the planet’s film industry.

Short History

The film festival begins in the context of Hitler and Mussolini’s influence at the Italian Film Festival. The Cannes Film Festival started its journey in 1938, when French Minister of Education Jean Zay decided to set up an international cinematographic festival at the suggestion of high-ranking official and historian Philippe Erlanger and film journalist Robert Favre Le Bret. They had the support of the Americans and the British.

On May 31, 1939, the city of Cannes finally selected as the location for the festival. On September 1, 1939, the first international film festival started its journey in Cannes. The official announcement launched by film personality and diplomat Philippe Erlanger in the southern French coastal city of Cannes. French government signed the International Film Festival’s official birth certificate with the name of ‘Le Festival International du Film’. Until 2003, the festival name was the International Film Festival (Festival international du film).

In the turbulent situation of the Second World War, the organization of this Film Festival also stopped. After a few years of closure, the International Film Festival relaunched in 1946. The 1st annual Cannes Film Festival held from 20 September to 5 October 1946. Twenty-one countries presented their films at the “First Cannes International Film Festival”, which took place at the former Casino of Cannes. Since this 1st Film Festival held immediate after World War II, most of the film’s plot was about war. From then on, every year a film selected from each country started getting place at the Cannes Film Festival.

Additional Information

After two years of organizing, the festival did not take place in 1948 and 1950 due to the economic downturn. But by then, it has become the most prestigious film festival in the world. In 1955, the city of Cannes in France permanently designated as the center of the festival. Even then, France’s transition from a fourth republic to a fifth republic marred by uncertainty over the organization of the festival. An agreement reached the following year to resolve the issue.

In the sixties, the division came to the Cannes Film Festival. Along with the traditional festival, Director Fortnight formed which led by Pierre Henry. It entirely owned by the filmmakers. In 1962, the French Union of Film Critics launched another part of the festival called ‘International Critics Week’. They started evaluating the 1st or 2nd work of the new director by awarding them. Besides, there were several changes in the different rules of main festival.

The Palme d’Or

The most prestigious award at the Cannes Film Festival is the The Palme d’Or. The winner selected from the films of the competition section. The Lumiere Theater shows the films. According to the current design of the award, 18 carat gold used in it which costs 20 thousand euro. Previously, from 1939 to 1954, the highest prize at the festival was the Grand Prix du Festival International du Film. In 1964, The Palme d’Or replaced again by the Grand Prix.

Red Carpet

The most interesting aspect of the Cannes Festival is the red carpet. Renowned stars around the world walked in the red carpet and joined the festival. Journalists on both sides of the array make crowd to take pictures of the stars. The 60 meter long red carpet changed three times a day.

Season of the Festival

In the beginning there was no specific season for the festival. After 1967, the Cannes Festival has been held in May each year, during the French Spring, for 12 days.

Budget of the Festival

The budget of Cannes Film Festival is about 20 million euros. Half of the money comes from the French budget and the other half comes from sponsors.

Final Words

Despite of many setbacks of different times, the Cannes Film Festival has been held regularly every year since 1950. But 2020 is exceptional year. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic the 2020 Cannes Film Festival was cancelled. 56 films were announced as official selections by the festival, but no awards were given this year. If all goes well, the next Cannes Film Festival 2021 will begin on Tuesday, May 11 and ends on Saturday, May 22.

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