Netflix pulls its films from Cannes
The platform's productions are banned from competition
12 April, 2018
Netflix is pulling its films from the upcoming Cannes Film Festival next month after organisers banned the streaming platform's projects from the Palme d'Or competition, announced newswires cited by BTA.Netflix Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos told Variety in an interview it was pointless to show at Cannes after the festival rule change.Cannes festival director Thierry Fremaux said in March that Netflix had refused to give its films theatrical distribution in France and would therefore be banned from competition at the 12-day festival. However, Fremaux said Netflix could show films outside competition.Netflix will not participate as a non-competitor, Sarandos told Variety. “I don't think there would be any reason to go out of competition. The rule was implicitly about Netflix, and Thierry made it explicitly about Netflix when he announced the rule. We want our films to be on fair ground with every other filmmaker. There is a risk in us going in this way and having our films and filmmakers treated disrespectfully at the festival. They've set the tone. I don't think it would be good for us to be there,” added Ted Sarandos. In France, it is a law that films cannot be released on home entertainment platforms until 36 months after their theatrical release. Last year, two Netflix films were featured in the Palme d'Or competition, which drew harsh criticism from French theatre owners and industry organisations. The company has released a few films, like fantasy thriller Bright starring Will Smith, in a small number of theatres. But most major chains have refused to show Netflix films because it releases them at the same time online. In comparison, films from traditional studios typically run exclusively in cinemas for about three months. Ted Sarandos said he personally would not attend the 8-19 May festival in the French Riviera, but said Netflix executives would be there looking at films to acquire.