Cannes 2019 Film Festival is filled with some of the best red carpet looks we’ve seen all year — including one in particular that broke all the rules.
On Thursday, May 16, French producer and DJ Kiddy Smile attended the screening of Mati Diop’s Atlantics in a silver fringe jumpsuit he designed himself. The next day, he walked the Pain and Glory red carpet in a pink and orange floral dress that looked absolutely fabulous. According to festival rules though both of these fashion-forward ensembles are against protocol.
Established in 1946, Cannes Film Festival is said to have a dress code that requires women to wear heels and men to wear tuxes. But the DJ wanted to go his own way.
“There’s something very old school about it,” he told Vogue. “I’m a cis man but if you’re gender-fluid or nonbinary, there is no space for you to exist within this protocol.”
He continued to tell the publication that he was able to sneak past people checking outfits on Thursday afternoon because photographers kept screaming for him to step forward. “So I just got on the red carpet and they started to take pictures,” he said. “The festival didn’t say anything because it was daytime and it was very early in the red carpet lineup.”
According to officials, all mention of strict restrictions are merely rumors and do not exist. “Nobody is obligated to wear heels on the red carpet,” festival’s director Thierry Fremaux said at the 2015 Kering Women in Motion event.
Whether the rules are formal or just guidelines, Smile isn’t the first to break them. Just last year Kristen Stewart attended the BlackkKlansman screening in an embellished Chanel minidress and black Christian Louboutin stilettos. Once she was finished snapping pictures the Twilight actress kicked off her shoes to walk the stairs with them in hand.
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