By Yves Herman
“Over your shoulder, look at me, straight ahead, dead center, ooh la la, give me eye contact, sir, madam, on your right, big smile, show me your dress, you look gorgeous!” It’s all you can say to catch their attention, you need them to look straight in to the lens of your camera.
Yes, we are talking about the stars, the real ones, the big ones but also those who fill the pages of magazines. They can be actors, models, TV hosts or even socialites. They are popular and bankable for 1,000s of photographers standing on the red carpets in Cannes.
The annual Cannes Film Festival on the French Riviera is the biggest film festival in the world. Running for 12 days, it garners the attention of thousands of reporters and the entire world of cinema fans. Press photographers from everywhere gather in the south of France, equipped with a bunch of cameras and all their lenses and flashes, searching to immortalize celebrities.
At Cannes, a film needs to be advertised and the cast members must be seen. The photocalls are organized especially for photographers, helping to promote the cast and the film. The stars know that it is part of their job to play the game and give us something to photograph. It can be an attitude, a gesture or sometimes even a little show, spontaneous or maybe prepared in advance by the cast.
The photocalls are like a Colosseum, where photographers can be compared to gladiators, adjusting their cameras like sharpening swords, ready to catch the “moment”. The moment of the photocall can offer glamour, touching seconds or sometimes boring minutes, when the stars don’t offer anything. Photographers exchange some words with the stars but the big show is for the red carpet.