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Cannes 2012: Inside the Gucci and Vanity Fair Party

Vanity Fair and Gucci threw a beautiful event at Hotel du Cap's Eden Roc in honor of Robert DeNiro and the newly restored "Once Upon a Time in America."

Francois-Henri Pinault and Salma Hayek in Gucci

In Cannes, there are parties every minute, ranging all the way from 1 to 10 — and every so often, there’s one that reaches magical proportions.

Such was the swank affair Vanity Fair threw with Gucci in honor of Robert DeNiro and the newly restored Once Upon a Time in America. Hosted by Graydon Carter and Gucci’s Frida Giannini and Francois-Henri Pinault, it started with a dinner at the Hotel du Cap’s Eden Roc, followed by a bigger party out on the Eden Roc’s deck.

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My Week With Marilyn director Simon Curtis, whose wife Elizabeth McGovern had to return to London after Once Upon a Time’s Friday night premiere due to shooting having started on season three of Downton Abbey, shared that during the screening, there’s a scene where DeNiro says to McGovern’s character, “We haven’t seen each other in 30 years.”

“And,” Curtis told THR, “they actually hadn’t seen each other in exactly thirty years. It was such an out of body moment!”

Alexander Payne was describing to friends what it’s like to be a jury member: “You want to be diplomatic, but at the same time, it’s a moment where you should be the most honest and the most opinionated.” James Toback shot Alec Baldwin negotiating the party for their upcoming documentary on Cannes.

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Paul Haggis was telling Julie Huntsinger, director of the Telluride fest, that he’s off to Rome to direct and produce his new film, Third Person, about couples in three cities. So far, he’s lined up Liam Neeson, Olivia Wilde and Naomi Watts to star — Watts floating through the party in her Gucci glittery dress like Eleanora Duse.

Even though they’ve been married a long time, Paul Bettany kept staring at wife Jennifer Connelly, saying, “Darling, you look so beautiful.”

With supermodels in sheer dresses in the room like Natasha Poly, Anya Rubik and Bianca Balti, it was quite a beautiful crowd — but equalled by the sheer power of DeNiro, Carter, Michel Hazavanicius, Bryan Lourd, David Geffen, Tom Freston, Harvey Weinstein, Chris Albrecht, Ron Burkle, Jim Gianopulos, John Hillcoat, Jeffrey Katzenberg, members of Sergio Leone’s family, Max Mutchnik and Wendi Murdoch.

Mia Wasikowska, in a purple J. Mendel, stuck close to her stylist Ryan Hastings. “You wouldn’t think I’d be overwhelmed by all this at this point,” she laughed. “But I’m not quite jaded yet.”

What do you think?

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