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CANNES — Eden Roc was the site of back-to-back parties Monday and Tuesday nights — first a dinner hosted by French Elle and sponsored by Dior on the lower balcony, and then a bash thrown by de Grisogono’s Fawaz Gruosi. During the former, Dior president Sidney Toledano apparently was wooing Mischa Barton for a possible gig, but she demurred: “I’ll let you know when I sign with an agency.” Faye Dunaway also was working it, telling anyone who would listen about her upcoming projects.
The latter party, which took up the entire terrace and both inside dining rooms, doubled as a birthday bash for Naomi Campbell, complete with four-layer cakes and a fireworks display over the bay.
“Having my birthday here is a tradition,” said Campbell, who usually throws herself a party on the French Riviera. Models dripping in diamonds and wearing KLS (Kimora Lee Simmons‘ higher-end clothing line) balanced precariously on pedestals overlooking the rocky cliffs, while moguls such as Flavio Briatore and Adnan Khashoggi swilled Champagne. The American contingent included Simmons, who arrived with Djimon Hounsou on her arm; Kerry Washington; Kid Rock (who later DJed), and Eva Mendes, who was agog at the glamour. “This is beyond amazing. I am having the best time,” she gushed. Not so for Beyoncé and Jay-Z, who came unannounced and did an about-face when they realized there were no seats for them.
Guests donned stripy school ties for the party for the film “St. Trinian’s” at the Long Beach on Sunday night that featured an oxygen bar and a cast of mad professors. Lily Cole ditched her school uniform for a gray silk gown by Jovovich-Hawk. “You’ll have to watch the film to see the antics that I get up to,” grinned Cole, who plays one of St. Trinian’s mischievous pupils.
Later that night, a sudden electricity blackout during the festival’s pivotal 60th anniversary dinner at the Parc de la Roseraie caused a momentary brouhaha, but the skies were brightened by a stellar fireworks display set off seconds later by boats that zipped around the bay.
Onlooker Helen Mirren looked like she had a few sparklers herself: The actress had chosen to decorate her yellow Elie Saab gown with a multicolor diamond necklace, a lavender titanium and diamond flower brooch and an emerald-cut cocktail ring, all courtesy of Chopard. The lot was worth $6 million.
As Gael García Bernal, Isabelle Huppert, Joana Preiss and Ludivine Sagnier mingled, some were in a nostalgic mood.
“Cannes is like meeting up with the family,” said Juliette Binoche.
“My favorite Cannes moment has to have been for the premiere of ‘The Leopard’ [in 1963],” said Claudia Cardinale, recalling how she had posed with a real leopard on the beach.
But many were living in the moment. “I must say that being a member of the jury is pretty unbeatable; it’s been a constant flow of caviar, Champagne and diamonds,” said Maggie Cheung. “All of the previous times I’ve been here, I’ve had to work my ass off.”