Film Scouts on the Riviera 2000

2000 Cannes Film Festival Diaries
...And God Created (French) Woman

by Richard Schwartz

Film Scouts on the Riviera 2000 is presented by:

CANNES, May 16 , 2000 - Right now, Cannes may be the prettiest spot on the earth.

Sure, the architecture is grand and the landscaping fine, but I'm not referring to that. I'm simply speaking about the women.

That's certainly not a revelation in Cannes. The beautiful women on display here have been well documented by the press and paparazzi. This edition is no exception. In a year noted for being short on star power, surely there's nothing lacking in aesthetic quality. We've already seen a red-carpet parade of the L'Oreal girls, Virginie Ledoyen, Gong Li, Claudia Schiffer. There's Carla Bruni. Uma Thurman.

Upcoming this week is a special Victoria's Secret fashion show. That famous, well-leafed-through catalog comes to life at Cannes, and the dreams of millions of men are realized. Supermodel Laetitia Casta, a contender for the most beautiful woman in the world title, is expected, too. And her closest competition, Spanish beauty Penelope Cruz, is here to promote a competition film provocatively titled "Woman on Top." And to top that all off, you have gathered in one spot a ton of aspiring actresses, models and beautiful people. Cannes is indeed a pretty place right now.

But the best part of it all is that Cannes will still be beautiful when the festival curtain goes down and the starlets head back to Paris, New York and L.A. Walking the streets over the past few days amidst the Cannois, I've realized that France may have the most extraordinary ordinary people in the world.

And it's about time they're appreciated. They may not be celebrity spokesmodels or even past girlfriends of Sly Stallone, but they're far from generic. And there's a substantial beauty to them, not a shallow one characterized by the American penchant for artifice. There's really something going on there. Compare our greatest sex symbol and icon of beauty with theirs, and you'll see what I mean. It's Bardot hands-down over Marilyn Monroe.

Ordinary people. Extraordinary beauty. Everywhere you look. The female gendarme are gorgeous. The girl selling candy is awe-inspiring. The schoolteacher riding the bus is ravishing.

It's just too bad none of them will even look my way.

They're all paired off with guys who look like Gerard Depardieu.

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