"The Cannes Film Festival has only been going for five minutes and Im sick to the back teeth of it already. Therefore this evening I intend to stage my own one-man protest against the whole affair by boycotting all things French. Unfortunately, that probably means Im going to have to eat something thats either German or Italian in origin. Italian, I think. At least they seem to have grasped the concept that a country should offer the world more then just seventeen different kinds of sausage and various things pickled in industrial- strength vinegar.
One thing that I read about the media-whores convention in Cannes was that the awards jury this year are going to be looking for films that "speak to the emotion rather then the intellect". No no no! Thats exactly the sort of guff that the Americans go for! Look where that gets them - hideous syrupy characterisation, nasty insipid sentimentality and crass happy endings. Oh, and a career for Ron Howard. Why dont they just try looking for the best film at the festival? Its a system that has worked perfectly well in the past. What next? The Palm DOr sponsored by McDonalds? The McCannes Film Festival?
I see that the whinging screenwriters in America managed to get most of their demands met. Not that there was any real danger that the studios allow a strike to take place. They couldnt afford to lose face to a bunch of nerds who sit in front of word processors all day and dont get enough sun. They were always going to have to get their chequebooks out at some stage. But dont make the mistake of feeling too sorry for them, theyll soon recoup the money by increasing ticket prices and adding a quid onto the price of a video or DVD. Capitalist bastards.
Talking of bastards, I finally got around to joining my local video library last week. Can anybody explain to me why I needed twice as much documentation as I did when I opened my bank account? I needed bank statements, two different forms of proof of identity and an example of my signature amongst other things before I was provided with an application form so complex that it looked like a Mensa IQ test. It certainly put the census form to shame. I was half-expecting to have to provide a DNA sample. Are their videos gold-plated or something?
Where the hell is that waiter?!
Did you see Nicole Kidman at the press conference for Moulin Rouge? The room was packed with slavering journalists waiting to hear lots of juicy gossip about her split from Tom "Cruise by name but not by nature" Cruise. Naturally she disappointed them by refusing to talk about it. When my last marriage broke up the papers were full of stories with lurid headlines like, "Michael in four-in-a-bed sex romp" and "Whiners hung like a well-hung horse says supermodel". It cost me a fortune to bribe the journalists enough to print them.
Mike Leigh is currently preparing to shoot his latest film. Hes abandoned the expensive excess of Topsy Turvy and returned to using improvisation to develop the plot of his current project which is known by the snappy title of The New Mike Leigh Project which rather sounds like some sort of Seventies progressive rock group. In fact even his producer admitted that he didnt know what the film was about but that it was set in the 21st century. For a moment, I had visions of a tale about middle class androids and their empty, meaningless existences that was until I remembered that were now in the 21st century. Incidentally how do you pitch a film like that to the money men? "We dont know what its about or where its set but Mike Leigh is doing it." "I see. Heres £500,000" Is it any wonder that the British Film Industry is in such a mess?
Talking of which what the hell has happened to my bloody plate? If I wanted Picasso I'd have gone to the Tate bloody Modern!"