New Star Wars damp squib in Cannes

Lukewarm response to blockbuster premiere

by Richard Mowe

Roll call of honour for the cast and crew at the Solo: A Star Wars Story premiere in Cannes
Roll call of honour for the cast and crew at the Solo: A Star Wars Story premiere in Cannes Photo: Festival de Cannes

Despite the imposing figures of Stormtroopers on the Cannes red carpet and a roll call of such cast members as the new Han Solo actor Alden Ehrenreich alongside director Ron Howard, Woody Harrelson, Thandie Newton, Paul Bethany and Donald Glover, the Cannes bow of Solo: A Star Wars Story was met with a muted response.

Newton, in particular, dressed to impress in a Vivienne Westwood Couture gown that featured photos of black character action figures from the franchise - Finn, Mace Windu, Captain Panaka, Saw Gerrera and Lando Calrissian.

Her stylist Erin Walsh described it on Instagram as "a dress made of dreams".

Fireworks were unleashed along the Croisette in a spectacular display accompanied by music from the film which almost eclipsed the pyrotechnics on screen.

The screening in the vast Lumiere theatre in the Palais des Festivals was full to overflow and anticipation was at fever pitch. In the event there was only lukewarm applause and a reduced standing ovation of around four minutes.

The trade magazines reported that the French in particular appeared not to appreciate the production from Disney and Lucasfilm.

The film which rolls out on release from 25 May, is the only major Hollywood production in Cannes this year. It the first time in more than a decade that a Star Wars film has been shown at the Festival. The Force was not with them this time around.

Thandie Newton in her Vivienne Westwood Couture gown at the after party at Carlton Beach
Thandie Newton in her Vivienne Westwood Couture gown at the after party at Carlton Beach Photo: Antony Jones/2018 Getty Images

Share this with others on...
News

Bodies in the water Simon Baker on fathers, sons, a rescue dog and Breath

Emotional response Marta Bergman on the heroine's journey in Alone At My Wedding

Art on screen Phil Grabsky on I, Claude Monet and the stories that bring art to life

Harvey Weinstein arrested in New York Former producer charged with rape

Show Dogs given snip Studio changes US theatrical cut after 'genital inspection' controversy

Morgan Freeman accused of sexual harassment Actor denies intentionally causing offence

More news and features

We're looking forward to the Edinburgh International Film Festival.



We've recently been at the Cannes Film Festival, the Tribeca Film Festival in New York, New Directors/New Films, the Istanbul Film Festival, London's BFI Flare and the New York Rendez-Vous with French Cinema.



Read our full for recent coverage.


Visit our festivals section.

Interact

Win a copy of Steven Spielberg's The Post in our latest competition.