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Almodovar and Smith's comments on Netflix at Cannes

20 May 2017

"It would be an enormous paradox if the Palme d'Or went to a film that can not be seen in cinemas", he said in the jury's first press conference.

Apparently very happy to be part of this jury presided by the vast Pedro Almodóvar, Will Smith - particularly seductive - spent a long time cuckooing and sending kisses to the onlookers who came to applaud him and his co-jurors. "In my home Netflix has been nothing but an absolute benefit - [they] watch films they otherwise wouldn't have seen", he said.

Oscar victor Vanessa Redgrave, twice Cannes' Best Actress, makes her directorial debut at the age of 80 with "Sea Sorrow", a documentary about the European refugee crisis.

Netflix, which streams films and television shows to subscribers, has two of the hottest movies in contention for the Palme d'Or - its first time in competition at the festival that France boasts is the greatest in the world.

American filmmaker Sofia Coppola, Scottish filmmaker Lynne Ramsay and French director Michel Hazanavicius are among the others competing for the prestigious Palme d'Or, the top prize of the festival. Almodovar, reading from a lengthy pre-written statement in Spanish, spoke about the tensions that have grown in a film industry that is trying to grapple with new players like Netflix that don't necessarily premiere movies in theaters.

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Due to a rule change for next year's festival, all movies submitted will have to be released in French cinemas.

The discussion came amid the dispute between Netflix and French exhibitors that center on a rule that states a film can only become available on streaming platforms in France a full three years after its release in cinemas. And now they get to find those artists and they look them up online and they make contact.

Smith, who has not had a film play at Cannes before, was dressed dapperly and posing cheerfully with festival-goers screaming "Will!" The Festival de Cannes does reiterate that, as announced on April 13, these two films will be presented in Official Selection and in Competition.

Stars are arriving under tighter security than in previous years, 10 months after the truck attack in nearby Nice that killed 86 people. Festival organizers have said everything was being done to maintain safety and the event's celebratory atmosphere.

When the topic was raised at the press conference Wednesday, Almodovar sided with the theater owners.

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Asked about reports that she and Reece Witherspoon are talking to Australian author Liane Moriarty and trying to develop a sequel, she teases, "It's definitely being talked about, but it takes a lot of work to get it to where we want it".

Opening ceremony and screening of the film "Les fantomes d'Ismael" (Ismael's Ghosts) out of competition - Red Carpet Arrivals - Cannes, France.

In the Cannes version, a new envelope was brought out and the interaction dissolved into a dance that ended with a kiss from Bellucci.

Haneke will be vying for a record third Palme d'Or with his new film, "Happy End", called a snapshot from the life of a bourgeois European family in the backdop of the refugee crisis.

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Almodovar and Smith's comments on Netflix at Cannes