May 22 - In Cannes, where celebrity sells and celebrities sell, director James Toback gives an insider look at the workings of the Cannes film festival. John Russell reports.
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Director James Toback joined actor Alec Baldwin and his visibly pregnant wife Hilaria Thomas on the red carpet in Cannes for the premiere of their documentary, "Seduced and Abandoned."
With parties, pitching and paparazzi already in overdrive at the world's premier movie market, Toback's film tells the story of how he and Baldwin talked to directors, investors and studio heads at Cannes last year to seek funding for a film with no A-list star.
They never intended to make the film, but its seemingly bankable plot about a spy and a journalist in Iraq turn found little interest with its lack of big names.
Baldwin himself was dismissed as a mere television actor, and the female star, Canada's Neve Campbell, star of the "Scream" films, was said to have little box office power.
Toback called it the classic case of money following stars.
SOUNDBITE James Toback saying (English):
"It's such a sensual festival, and at the same time there's all this hustle and bustle and rigorous activity and people from every aspect of movies and which is we wanted to do, make a movie that really gets to the heart of what's going on in the film universe today."
As well as being the world's top cinema showcase, Cannes brings together up to 40,000 professionals to buy and sell films and seek funding for projects, but many of these never see a film at the festival.
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