Who oversleeps on the first day of Cannes? Tell me? Surely not hard-working, perfectionist-type journalists who have just made the huge effort to get themselves to the south of France…?
Well, that is indeed what happened to me, even as I set my alarm for 6am so that I could get a run in before heading off to the Hotel Du Cap, where I was to interview the cast of Mad Max: Fury Road.
I can’t even say that I had a raging wild night before. In fact, straight after the Mad Max screening I went home, stopping only for a brief round of hugs at a pre-festival get-togther among fellow journalist friends, with the knowledge that I had a 9am call time the next day. The apartment I’m staying in has a button that closes the shutters, perfect for drowning out the sights and sounds of the Cannes nightlife.
Those same shutters are part of the reason I woke up in a flat panic with no sunlight coming into the apartment, and so no concept of what time it was. Although I could feel in my bones, it was not 6am.
I could blame jet-lag and not having slept at all on the flight over here, but either way, it was 11am and I missed both alarms that I had set for myself. It’s a sinking feeling – to think you may have missed an interview with Charlize Theron, the biggest job I have while here in Cannes. I threw on a dress, shoved make-up into a bag, ran out the door, and hailed a taxi to drive the 35 minutes to the hotel (stopping, of course, to go to the ATM because someone hadn’t drawn any Euros yet), hoping against hope that I could still be slotted into the junket.
Flailing down the pathway to the interview setting, half panting and hair all out of place, I was greeted by the publicist – only to have her tell me my interviews are tomorrow.
Relief is not even the word to describe how I felt. Oh, Cannes! You have got off to a rollicking start.
After that fiasco, I took myself off to the press conference of the jury that will decide which film will win the Palme d’Or this year. Headed by Joel and Ethan Coen, the Oscar-winning brothers who said they’re looking forward to being on the other side of the screen and watching movies for the next 12 days. If I can wake up in time, so am I.