The Cannes festival 2019 demonstrates a further shift of the VII Art into politics, being used as a tool to shape political preferences of the spectators, abandoning even formal frame of neutrality, and preoccupation with artistic creations.
At the press conference introducing this year’s festival jury, its president Alejandro González Iñárritu, ceased an opportunity to criticize President Trump, and another jury member Alice Rohrwacher denounced film industry for failing to meet gender equality standards, and promote female film-makers. Subsequently, the times of art uniting people are gone, contaminating the festival with toxic emanation of political struggle. From universal language of images, the film industry has openly transformed itself into a tool for political use, promoting agenda of specific groups of interest.
The first Mexican-born president of the Cannes jury, Iñárritu, expressed concern at rise of populism, including Trump’s ascendance to power, and added that his presence at the festival served as a repudiation for the US president’s anti-immigration policies.
According to Alice Rohrwacher to be a woman-film director is similar to “survival a “shipwreck”. However, in spite of being plagued with so many political concerns, the 72nd Cannes film festival gets underway with movies presentations.
Every year, the Cannes Festival invites filmmakers from all over the world to give their own interpretation of the contemporary world, sketching a world map of cinema. In 2018, more than 120 countries were represented.
The president of the European Parliament Antonio Tajani expressed his grief, and his support to France in dramatic moments of aftermath of fire, consuming greatest Paris monument. He called Notre-Dame “first Cathedral” of his life, and added that his heart is broken. The emotional address of the president came during the morning Plenary session in the European parliament, Strasbourg.
The president of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker said in his Twitter micro blog, that he had been following the development of the situation “minute by minute”, underlining that Notre-Dame belongs to humanity. He referred to the fire as “horror”, sharing feelings of French nation.
The president of the European Council Donald Tusk stepped forward with an optimistic message of possibility of reconstruction of Notre Dame. Being a citizen of Polish city of Gdansk he ensured that it is possible, illustrating his opinion with the experience of his home town, which suffered almost total destructed and resurrected.
“My comment on the role of NGOs is unambiguous. […] I have never questioned the sincerity of NGOs”, said French Minister of Interior Christophe Castaner in a video posted on his Twitter micro blog, while ensuring that his statements, concerning NGOs were based on “facts“.
“It is documented that in some cases there have been de facto interactions between smugglers and some NGOs,” he said, citing “two Frontex reports in November and December 2016“.
On April 12, while ensuring that NGOs “play a vital role in providing assistance to migrants” in the Mediterranean, Christophe Castaner had considered that they “could be accomplices” smugglers and had called them to “have a responsible attitude“. The SOS Mediterranean Association sent him a letter denouncing “serious accusations“, assuring that none of these allegations “has ever been proven or substantiated by the slightest evidence” and that “none of the judicial proceedings initiated did not succeed“.
“Our enemies, our real enemies, our only enemies, are the smugglers. The smugglers, and nobody else“, also underlined Christophe Castaner, who denounced the reactions of indignation coming from the NGOs.
The former French Minister of European Affairs Nathalie Loiseau expressed her point of view “in a personal capacity“about holding a second Brexit referendum. In her option that would be a “denial of democracy”.
Confusion remains on the future of the EU departure from the bloc as the subject divides the British lawmakers and the British government, a few weeks before the scheduled exit date of the United Kingdom from the European Union, a short delay to April 12 has been proposed from member-states.
“I am personally hostile to a new referendum now because I think it would be a denial of democracy,” said Nathalie Loiseau on BFM TV, who left the government a day before to lead the list of the LaRem party (“Republic on March” of President Macron) in the 26 May European elections.
The former minister blamed the current “chaos” on the “simplistic slogans” infused into debate by the supporters of Brexit during the campaign that preceded the June 23, 2016 referendum.
French ambassador to Vanuatu (pictured), accused of sexual assault, was removed from office. A woman had reproached him for caressing her buttocks several times on February 11 at an Economic Summit.
The French government has terminated the duties of the ambassador to Vanuatu, which is the subject of a complaint for sexual assault, according to a decree published in the official journal.
“The functions of Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the French Republic to the Republic of Vanuatu, exercised by Mr. Robby Judes has been terminated“, reads the text of March 20, published in the Official Journal.
The ambassador was summoned in February to the Foreign Ministry in Paris, to be heard by his supervisory authorities on the complaint lodged against him in Noumea, New Caledonia, on 14 February.
The complainant, a company boss, said in her complaint that the ambassador had stroked her buttocks several times and asked for her contact information.
Robby Judes has been an ambassador to Vanuatu since November 2018. He held the same position in Comoros (2014-2017) after serving as a diplomatic advisor to Overseas Minister Victorin Lurel (2012-2014).
“The EU is ensuring continuity of train services between the EU (France and Ireland) and the United Kingdom in the event of the UK leaving the EU without a deal. The Council today adopted a regulation on a temporary extension of the validity of certain authorisations, certificates and licences that are needed to run the services. The aim of this extension is to allow the parties concerned to conclude the necessary agreements and take any other measures to avoid disruption, taking into account the status of the UK as a non-EU country.”
“This is the last Brexit contingency regulation to be adopted in the field of transport. Five other Brexit-related regulations in the area of transport were adopted by the Council (General Affairs) on 19 March. All these legal acts will be signed by representatives of the Council and the Parliament on 25 March and subsequently published in the EU Official Journal.”
Penalised by a further decline in France and the United Kingdom, champagne sales fell in 2018 to their lowest level since 2004 in the number of bottles shipped from the cellars.
For the first time in a hundred years, volumes sold in France were lower than those sold for export outside the EU.
“The decline in volume is becoming a little worrying, the decline in France and the United Kingdom is not offset by the rise of large export;” said Jean-Marie Barillère, co-chairman of the CIVC.
The appellation, which sold 301.9 million bottles last year, a figure down 1.8%, however managed to stabilize its turnover at a record level of 4.9 billion euros ( + 0.3%) reached in 2017, according to figures released March 17 by the Interprofessional Champagne Wine Committee (CIVC).
In France, sales continued their slide in a sluggish economic environment and leaded at the end of the year by the movement of Yellow vests.