May Flowers, weeknights @ 11:00
Fifty-four years ago last month, way back in 1955, movie star Grace Kelly attended the Cannes Film Festival (pictured below) -- it was held in April in those days. She had just headlined two Alfred Hitchcock hits Rear Window and Dial M for Murder and just barely won the Oscar for Country Girl. To Catch a Thief was arriving later that summer. She was in short, as super as superstars get.
During this very trip to Cannes she met Prince Rainier of Monaco! How crazy must that year have been for her? The courtship was aggressive and they married the following April.
Their royal union made her even more famous but ended her film career. Kelly never made another motion picture (though two were released in 1956: The Swan and High Society) and Prince Rainier subsequently banned screening of her films (according to at least one website it's still illegal to show Kelly films in Monaco). Reportedly the marriage got in the way of two comeback trips, the actress wanted to make: a reunion with Hitchcock for Marnie (1962) which went to Tippi Hedren and the ballet drama The Turning Point (1977) which eventually starred Shirley Maclaine and Anne Bancroft. In short, Prince Rainier was an enemy of the cinema.
If you stop to think about it, Cannes not only makes international movie careers it also destroys them. Exhibit: Grace Kelly.
The 62nd annual Festival de Cannes kicks off a week from today running May 13th through the 24th.