What a Delayed Cannes Film Festival Means for World Cinema (Column)

When it comes to film festivals, everyone follows Cannes’ lead, which is why it’s curious that the influential French event, originally scheduled to unspool from May 12-23 this year, waited more than a full week after the World Health Organization declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic — and two weeks after the French government banned public gatherings through the end of May — to announce that it would not take place as originally planned.So what does that mean for Wes Anderson’s “The French Dispatch,” which looked like as good a bet as any to debut there after Searchlight Pictures dated the film for a July 24 release? Or such anticipated auteur works as Paul Verhoeven’s nun-cest saga “Benedetta,” Leos Carax’s song-and-dance statement “Annette” and Apichatpong Weerasethakul’s Tilda Swinton-starring “Memoria,” all of which had been expected to premiere on the Croisette? The pandemic struck at a momentous time for Cannes,

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