Last month, Cannes director Thierry Fremaux told Variety that a “planetary blockbuster” would make its debut at this year’s late edition of the prestigious film festival—with Denis Villeneuve’s Dune already set for a Venice premiere, what other “planetary blockbuster” could there be? Variety has saved us the embarrassment of further speculation by revealing the answer: F9 (aka Fast & Furious 9) has the honor of being the big, buzzy blockbuster to muscle its way into the fancy schmancy film festival, where the ninth installment in the vehicular action-opera franchise will hob-knob with the likes of highly-anticipated new films from Wes Anderson, Sean Baker, Todd Haynes, and Leos Carax. Unfortunately, Vin Diesel and the Fast #family will not be in attendance, thus robbing us—the general moviegoing population, and the people whose ticket stubs made nine of these damn movies possible—the sheer joy of seeing Vin Diesel decked out in white linens, posing alongside Isabelle Huppert on the Palais.
F9, which has already grossed over $250 million worldwide ahead of its June 25 debut in the U.S., will have a special beachfront premiere during the festival and ahead of its July 14 release in France. This year’s Cannes film festival runs from July 6 through July 17, and will commence with the world premiere of Annette, the new musical drama directed by Leos Carax and starring Adam Driver and Marion Cotillard. Jodie Foster is set to receive the honorary Palme d’Or during the opening night festivities.
Spike Lee will preside over the jury evaluating the 21 films in competition at the festival this year, including Annette, Wes Anderson’s The French Dispatch, Paul Verhoeven’s Benedetta, Sean Baker’s Red Rocket, Mia Hansen-Love’s Bergman Island, Justin Kurzel’s Nitram, and Titane—the intriguing new film from Raw filmmaker Julia Ducournau. Among the titles playing outside competition are new documentaries from Todd Haynes (The Velvet Underground) and Oliver Stone (JFK Revisited: Through The Looking Glass), and new dramas from Andrea Arnold (Cow) and Tom McCarthy (Stillwater).