Smoke protest on Cannes red carpet

Women unfurl banner ahead of Holy Spider screening

by Richard Mowe

Protest came before a screening of Holy Spider
Protest came before a screening of Holy Spider Photo: Courtesy of Cannes Film Festival
After the Cannes red carpet furore when a naked and blood spattered woman protested in response to reports of Russian soldiers raping women in Ukraine, more female protesters stormed the steps of the Palais des Festivals this afternoon ahead of the premiere of Ali Abbasi’s film Holy Spider in the official Competition.

Around 12 women in black attire raised fists and released billows of black smoke as well as unfurling a long scroll of women’s names, believed to be rape victims. Pictures appeared quickly on social media.

The film deals with a journalist who travels to the Iranian city of Mashhad to probe a serial killer Saeed Hanajei, who has been murdering sex workers.

Based on a true story the man said he was on a holy mission to cleanse the streets of sin, according to the film makers.

No group has so far claimed responsibility for the actions. Security personnel allowed the protest to continue but it ended before the film team arrived.

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