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Cannes Film Festival 2016

All you need to know about this year's edition of the annual glitz-fest • May 11-22 2016

© Festival de Cannes 2015
When is Cannes Film Festival 2016?
May 11-22 in Cannes, near Nice, southeast France.

What is it?
The Cannes Film Festival is one of the world's leading film festivals. Its top prize, the Palme d'Or, is the most prestigious award in world cinema. It was won in 2015 by Jacques Audiard for ‘Dheepan’ and has previously been won by among others Terrence Malick, Ken Loach, Lars Von Trier, Quentin Tarantino and Jane Campion.

Which films will be showing?
The programme is still to be announced (films are submitted in November 2015, before being announced in April). Each year, roughly 20 films go head to head in the festival's main competition, for prizes including the Palme d'Or, the Grand Prix, the Jury Prize and awards for best actor, best actress, best director and best script. Films must be premieres and can only have been previously shown to an audience in their home country.

What about VIPs?
Cannes is all about that delicate balance between art and celebrity. While critics are settling in for the latest Turkish masterpiece, you can guarantee that someone like Sacha Baron-Cohen will be executing an attention-grabbing publicity stunt for their latest film somewhere else in town. The world's media are always in Cannes - and the film industry does its very best to exploit that fact.

Can I buy tickets?
Not yet. Not ever. Cannes is not a public film festival, although most of the films showing will be coming to cinemas in the months after the event. Crowds do flock to the coastal town to try to spot celebs or just soak up the atmosphere. And there are tickets available to see films in the two parallel events, Critics' Week and Directors' Fortnight, which are outside the Official Selection.