Is Anyone Canceled in Cannes? Shia LaBeouf and James Franco Movies Shopped Amid France’s #MeToo Moment

On the second night of this year’s Cannes Film Festival, Judith Godrèche told the mostly female crowd assembled on a beach next to the Palais, “This film is for you!” The French actor-director was presenting her short “Moi Aussi,” a last-minute addition to the festival lineup that covers sexual misconduct in the French film industry. Godrèche has become something of an ambassador to the fledgling movement after she came forward in February with claims that she was preyed upon and groomed as a minor by directors Benoît Jacquot and Jacques Doillon, allegations they both deny. The beach screening kicked off what many hope will be a sweeping French #MeToo reckoning.

But the festival and its accompanying film market also will feature several men who have been the subject of #MeToo allegations that range from sexual harassment, sexual assault and domestic violence. The awkward presence of such actors as Shia LaBeouf and James Franco, which comes in stark contrast to Godrèche’s message of zero tolerance, begs the question: Is anyone really canceled in Cannes?

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Hours after “Moi Aussi” screened inside the Palais on Thursday, Francis Ford Coppola’s “Megalopolis” unspooled in the same theater. Walking the red carpet was the film’s star LaBeouf, who was sued 2020 by ex-girlfriend FKA Twigs for sexual battery, assault and infliction of emotional distress. The complaint also claimed that he abused former girlfriend Karolyn Pho. The lawsuit continues to move through the courts and is poised to go to trial in the fall.

Adding fuel to the “Megalopolis” fire, the Guardian dropped a bombshell story hours before the festival began that claimed Coppola allegedly pulled women to sit on his lap during production on “Megalopolis” and tried to kiss semi-nude female extras while shooting a bacchanalian nightclub scene in an effort “to get them in the mood.”

One woman involved with the film told Variety that she was unaware of any such behavior from the two-time Palme d’Or winner and chalked it up to a generational divide. Still, she was unnerved, “Even at 85, he should know better,” she says.

Meanwhile, LaBeouf won’t be merely screening in competition. At the Cannes Market, Metro Intl. Entertainment is selling a LaBeouf star vehicle, the boxing crime-drama “Salvable.” Similarly, Red Sea Media is shopping international rights to the Franco action thriller “The Razor’s Edge” at the Marche. That film, which also stars Tommy Lee Jones, begins shooting in Georgia next month. (In 2018, five women accused Franco of inappropriate or sexually exploitative behavior while enrolled at his acting school.) And Bill Murray, whose film “Being Mortal” was scrapped by Searchlight midway through production in 2022 after allegations surfaced that he straddled a female production assistant and kissed or rubbed her on the mouth, has a project being shopped in the market titled “Riff Raff,” a crime comedy that also stars Jennifer Coolidge.

Cannes is hardly alone in its inclusion of men who have experienced the cold shoulder in Hollywood. In 2019, the Venice Film Festival drew fire for inviting both Roman Polanski for “An Officer and a Spy” and Nate Parker for “American Skin.”

Still, Cannes leadership is making a conscious decision to keep Godrèche front and center at the festival rather than relegate her to the fringes. The actress, who once starred opposite Leonardo DiCaprio in “The Man in the Iron Mask,” walked the red carpet at the high-wattage “Furiosa” premiere Wednesday where she and other women posed for the cameras and covered their mouths in unison.

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