For any filmmaker, getting your film to Cannes Film Festival might be one of the biggest rewards of their career, apart from winning at the Academy Awards. However, due to ongoing issues with Russia and their attempted takeover of Ukraine, Cannes has officially banned any Russian journalists from being allowed to report from the film festival if they are not openly opposing the country from attempting to take over Ukraine. Based on a statement that was released by Cannes, “We would like to salute the courage of all those in Russia who have taken risks to protest against the assault and invasion of Ukraine.”
Cannes is not messing around when it comes to this conflict as they have banned all Russian delegates or any government official that is linked to the invasion, as the film festival organizers publicly condemned Russia’s actions. The film festival joins a long list of companies across the globe that have stopped any involvement with Russia in any way. Netflix, for instance, stopped all services in the country and lost some 700,000 subscribers as a result. Those are huge monetary losses, but Netflix has certainly made its stance clear on the matter.
Cannes is not banning everyone that is from Russia, only those who have been openly in support of the invasion of Ukraine. In fact, a Russian filmmaker by the name of Kirill Serebrennikov is presenting a film at the festival this year. His film is titled, Tchaikovsky’s Wife. However, he is known to be a dissident from Russia, as he was held under house arrest earlier this year. Cannes had apparently only allowed a few Russian outlets to be able to report from the film festival, but only due to their outright stance on the current war. It is said that it is hard to oppose Vladimir Putin and the actions of the Russian government due to stringent censorship laws that have been enacted in the country. Most outlets are not even allowed to call the invasion a war at all.
Cannes joining in on sanctioning Russia from any involvement is just part of the world’s attempt to have more bloodshed stopped in Ukraine, as there have been plenty of civilian bombings and more horrific things happening as a result of this attempted takeover. Companies around the world have also placed heavy sanctions on Russia, as they are attempting to put a stranglehold on any sort of support that the country could get to continue its war efforts. Even President Biden has asked Congress for $33 billion to help aid Ukraine in its fight.
Ukraine has been holding fast and fighting in every way imaginable, as plenty of support from around the world has poured in. Hopefully, the country can withstand the bombings and attacks long enough for Russia to abandon this horrific plan of taking over the country. The world still watches closely and hopefully even more can be done in the coming weeks to stop more deaths from occurring. Cannes is doing its part to ensure that they send a clear message to Russia’s government that this invasion is awful in every way.