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Friday, June 20, 2008

Penn in CannesJason Wald (C10), Felisha Liu (W09), Anna Cororaton(C09)

So far this week Felisha Liu (W'09) shared some of the good, bad and disappointing films she saw at Cannes, how she managed to score tickets to films through the art of begging and which Penn powerful Penn alumni she met.

Today, she tells us about the electricity in the air at Cannes and her first walk down the Red Carpet!

Click here to read her post!

Check back tomorrow to find out about a very special Beach screening of a film classic Felisha attended and which star made a surprise appearance!

Read Part 1: Penn in Cannes: The Good, The Bad, and The Disappointing
Read Part 2: Penn in Cannes: Begging and Tips For Scoring You Tickets & Access
Read Part 3: Hobnobbing With Penn Hollywood Big Wigs

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Per Felisha:

"Red is the color of power, strength, passion, danger and desire.

The Red Carpet of the Grand Theater Lumiere at the Festival De Cannes is all of these and so much more. The first time I walked down the Red Carpet, I couldn’t stop smiling.

It didn’t matter that jaded people around me gave me dirty looks as I posed for what seems like an onslaught of pictures.

How many people get to walk the Red Carpet in their lifetime? Not many, and so I was going to take full advantage of the opportunity. There are two entrances to the Red Carpet: the Orchestra and Corbeille seats walk the entire carpet, while Balcony seats merge halfway up.

My first film was the 11:30pm screening of Blindness, for which I was fortunate enough to get Orchestra seats. I strutted like a VIP past the barricades separating us from the gawkers. At the edge of the Red Carpet, my friends and I paused to take it all in. Lights from the top of the stairs shone like beacons, enveloping everything in a surreal light. Photographers lined the Carpet on both sides with ever-flashing bulbs ready to capture that million dollar shot. Savoring every moment of pure bliss, I walked extremely slowly up towards the stairs. My friends and I anchored ourselves in the middle of the stairs and gave ourselves our own photo shoot alongside the paparazzi.

It is impossible not to get caught up in the frenzy. There is a sense of excitement and electricity in the air all up and down the Croisette, the beachfront street of Cannes, during the nighttime premieres. The streets are barricaded as black-tinted Renault cars drop off the movie stars one by one. Screaming signifies a recognizable celebrity, and the entire crowd pushes forward to try to get a closer look. Walking down the street is nearly impossible. In addition to the thousands of gawkers, automobiles try to drive through the masses. The worst traffic jams are the strollers going against the flow of traffic. Add on the onslaught of people still begging for last minute tickets and the result is angry shouting and violent pushing.

But in the end, it the traffic is worth the experience of the Red Carpet. Everyone wants a piece of the magic. For the little girls who grew up thinking they wanted to be Princesses, walking down the Red Carpet is about as close as you can get.

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