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What have you missed most about Cannes?
There’s something about the energy in the air, traveling to such a beautiful place with so much history in film to premiere and/or introduce new films to the marketplace that is so exciting. Vastly more so than doing it from your living room or office on a computer screen. It’s the elegance of it, the magic of movies, that I miss most and look forward to being back.
What restaurant or bar have you missed?
I can easily and wholeheartedly say that out of all the wonderful restaurants that are in Cannes, it is La Pizza that I miss the most. It’s that combination of the cheese, the backdrop of the harbour in the French Riviera and washing it down with French rosé that always hits the spot.
What have you not missed about Cannes?
Whatever there is not to miss, not having Cannes is substantially worse.
How do you feel about Cannes in July vs May?
I can only be grateful that Cannes is back. Let’s just hope it rains less in July than it has in May.
How did you spend lockdown?
I spent the beginning month of lockdown working hard on a plan to restart production and integrating strict COVID safety protocols with our team at Nu Boyana studio, the Bulgarian Film Center, the Ministry of Health and SAG so we could get back to work. I’ve been fortunate enough to have traveled a lot, to have shot several films over the past year, released a handful, including The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard, which was the No. 1 film in North America the weekend of June 18, to start shooting two films on June 28 — The Piper and The Enforcer, and to have another three films to release in the next few months, with many more to shoot. And amid all this, I met the love of my life, Salomé Chandler, during the pandemic. I couldn’t be more grateful for everything, especially for having her in my life.
Will you miss Zoom meetings or are they here to stay?
Zoom meetings are here to stay, however, I certainly will not miss virtual markets, as back-to-back meetings for days without end sitting in the same spot in front of a computer is horrendous. I think what we have learned is that we can efficiently utilize our time and meet people anywhere in the world anytime without the need to travel, which is something that will continue to be incredibly effective.
Is wearing pants regularly going to be weird?
I love wearing suits during the markets and festivals. I love wearing a tux or black tie for premieres, galas and events. I love sports coats and linen shirts. And I do love wearing sweatpants or my Lulu joggers too. I am ready for bringing back occasions, so we have the need to dress for the occasion.
Best bargain in Cannes?
A €5 umbrella when there’s a torrential downpour.
Your only in Cannes moment?
Being able to partner with Thierry Fremaux and the Festival de Cannes to do a major red carpet event to honor Sylvester Stallone with a career retrospective, to screen Rambo and to bring an exclusive teaser of our Rambo: Last Blood to the Grand Theatre Lumiere in 2019.
Biggest pet peeve?
Having to wait in the security line to get back to our office for meetings after lunch when you’re running late!
Cannes guilty pleasure?
Da Laura, La Petite Maison, L’Ondine, Le Maschou, La Pizza, La Mome, Baoli Beach and long lunches at the Du Cap at the end of the festival.
One thing you won’t travel without, besides your phone?
My vaccination passport.
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