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Cannes red carpet

Can I get a photo of myself on the red carpet?



The idea of getting a photo of yourself on the red carpet at Cannes long predates the existence of camera phones and the word 'selfie'. It's been around pretty much since cameras became cheap enough and small enough to carry in your pocket or purse.

People taking photos on the red carpet has long irked the Festival. Officially, festivalgoers were told not to do it, but the practice wasn't prevented entirely. You could whip out your camera and take a quick snap, but anyone who lingered for more than a moment was politely asked to move on. That all changed in 2018.

Ahead of the 2018 event, Festival director Thierry Frémaux said he believed that people taking selfies slowed down the process of entering the theatre and "tarnished the quality" of the red carpet experience. A strict ban on selfies and other photography on the carpet was introduced and has remained in place ever since. Anyone who pauses, or even looks like they're reaching for a smart phone, will be swiftly moved on by the festival ushers.

It is however still possible to get a photo of yourself on the red carpet via one of the official photographers (and yes, cynics amongst us will note it's rather convenient that the only people allowed to take photos are those who get paid for it). Most of the photographers who line the red carpet have no interest in regular festivalgoers. They're either from major media outlets or are approved freelancers looking to shoot celebrities. However, dotted among them are a small number of official Monteé des Marches ("step climber") photographers who are there to take photos of anyone who wants it.

If you're interested in getting photographed, it's a good idea to swing by the Photographes - Monteé des Marches tent outside the Palais before your red carpet evening. This is not only where you purchase your photos after the event, but it's also where you can see photos of the official photographers (so you know who to strike a pose for on the carpet).

Photos are normally available early afternoon from the day after the screening. Only the most recent screenings are normally displayed, so if you're looking for a photo from a few days ago, you'll need to ask.

A full rundown on the 2021 Cannes Film Festival, is available in the book, Cannes - A Festival Virgin's Guide (7th Edition).
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