Cannes Red Carpet: Am I the Only One Watching?

Credits: Photo - Anonymous, Styling - Sarah G. Schmidt, Location - Louise Bridge


I have been delighting in the Cannes red carpet fashion the past week. There’s nothing like coastal France to bring out the extra in everyone. Tonnes of the film industry players – actors, directors, producers, financiers, and model philanthropists – are all swaggering their way down that glorious-right-near-the-water carpet. With all the nasty stuff going on, it’s especially nice to escape for a wee bit.

However, when I chat with my tuned in friends, most go, “Huh?” or “What festival now?” At first I was taken a back a bit, but then I got thinking. Am I in the minority for loving all red carpets, including Cannes? It’s the 70th year for <insert higher power, like “Beyoncé’s”> sake. Is there a maximum level of give-a-shit tolerance for red carpets that I’m unaware of? And if so, why?

Remembering middle school science best practice principals, I started brainstorming potential hypothesis’ to vet. Here are my theories:

Hypothesis 1: Does the event need to be in Canada or America for us to care?

For: There’s a lot going on in any given industry’s calendar. In most places in the world – except nudist colonies – one needs to wear clothes to work and events. Awards and high profile events have a red carpet element. There’s an event nearly every day. There’s a lot to follow should you wish. Perhaps it makes sense that viewers care more about local events, as it’s closer – geographically if nothing else - to them personally.

Against: It’s a bit of a dick move to only care about what’s happening in your own fashion backyard. As in the thought or value that you can only care about what’s close to you. That sounds close minded and a little scary considering our world is imploding right now.

Hypothesis 2: Do you not care about all red carpets because you can see what your favourite stars are wearing via the glorious Internet?

For: Instant gratification via the Internet is great for so many things. For example, ordering take out, getting news updates, verifying credits on IMDB… why would fashion be any different? It’s easy to check out what’s going on in your favourite celebrities lives by simply clicking on their profile. Get what you want and you can feel good that you didn’t waste any time on people you’re not into.

Against: There’s something to say about discovering the moments for yourself rather than the vetted ones posted on celebrities own channels. I like to see a “bad angle” or a slip here and there. Yes, I want to be beautiful but I want it to see a real moment too. What about, too, people you do not know yet? It’s tricky to search for a name if you don’t know it. Keeps you in a bit of a bubble.

Hypothesis 3: Can we chalk it up to simple case of red carpet overload?

For: Building upon the first two, maybe we’re just overloaded and can only give so many f*cks? Every event has a red carpet. Even local events - like concerts, car shows, or store openings - have photo walls. They’re everywhere. It’s a lot. We’re all busy people. Perhaps there are more important things to fill your time.

Against: Fashion is like a buffet: there’s more choice then what any one person needs, yet we all tend to gorge on what we have a strong taste for. If you love something, such as red carpet fashion, is there ever really enough?

The Verdict: Inconclusive

It’s tough to land on just one theory, right? Thinking back to science class (and a bit of university statistics) I think I have muddled this up. First, there are too many variables. Second, each of these hypotheses builds on another so we don’t have that “mutually exclusive” business I heard so much about yet didn’t understand at the time.

Of course it’s rarely just one thing. But if you had to choose the strongest case of the three listed, what would you deem the biggest influencer? Or, what hypothesis did I overlook? Do tell.

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