On the eve of the Cannes Film Festival, pesky protesters are threatening to disrupt the foofaraw along the Croisette, thoughtfully offering to don tuxedos when they take to the red carpet outside the Palais to air their grievances about artisans' unemployment benefits.
Wait, it gets better.
According to a report in Variety [subscription required]
Nearly 100 showbiz protesters besieged a depot where French films were being loaded into vehicles destined for Cannes and prevented them from leaving for several hours.
Hey, Cannes Intermittents en Lutte (Battling Cannes Showbiz Workers), that's really great. Hope you wore gloves there at the depot because comme dit on "tetanus shot" en Français? The cinetrix has handled film cans plenty, and you don't want to get near them if you can avoid it.
Ever stop to think about where movies come from? It's not all "When a studio and an A-list star love each other very much...." How do they, the physical items [and not the universal language], make their way "to a theater near you," and where do they live when they're not on the screen?
Well, some, especially repertory pictures owned by one of the big studios and lovingly restored by UCLA geeks, live in beautiful temperature-controlled vaults somewhere in LA county. But those shitty, crackly prints that hit the second-run houses and college film societies? They live in warehouses in Long Island City. Which means they're likely covered with microscopic [if you're lucky] particles of rodent fecal matter and other good stuff. Some films rate the fancy new blue or orange plastic cannisters, which appear more hygenic, but I'd say the majority of the world's 35mm prints are transported in rusty, rat shit-encrusted metal cans that weigh a ton. [The exception? Hong Kong action flicks from Tai Seng, which used to be shipped in "boxes" that were more shipping tape than cardboard that once held hot dogs.] These cans are reused time and time again.
Keep in mind, those films sitting in the depot the protesters besieged probably also spent some time in commercial aircraft holds and customs warehouses on their way to Cannes, notably clean places all. While these protesting artists are worried about their unemployment benefits the last thing they should get anywhere near is a film can, socialized medicine or no. Stick to philosophical discourse and formal wear.
The cinetrix is all about suffering for art, but she had to get a tetanus shot after she sliced open her leg on a rusty can while humping the 12-reel Cannes fave Eternity and a Day up a flight of stairs. It was nothing nice.