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Preparing for Cannes

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Cannes fashion mood board(Photo by Kara Smith)

Sisters Kara Smith and Karli Powell’s short film Blotter, screened at the prestigious Cannes International Film Festival last week. They shared their respective blogs about their five days on the French Riviera with Lifestyle. Look out for more next week.

I’ll admit, my first thoughts about Cannes were preoccupied with how to say it.

I remember years ago having a debate outside of Police Club about whether it was pronounced Ca-ah-nes with a silent H or Ca-annes with a silent S.

The conversation was preceeded by the drama one appears to have while smoking in Europe versus a contemptuous bad habit everywhere else. In any case I don’t think that we officially decided on how best to utter Cannes, but it was decided somehow that one day I’d find out directly.

I think now is as good a time as any to insert the point that my path into filmmaking comes through being a writer.

And anyone that’s familiar with the writer’s condition, knows that anxiety and angst are familiar emotional territories. So when I was notified about Blotter being selected to screen in the Short Film Corner, I immediately paced between disbelief and excitement. This was my first solo directing project and I wasn’t sure that I had quite hit my mark. I read and re-read the acceptance letter and by the end of the episode I was somewhere between proud and honoured.

I’ve heard some pretty harrowing stories about working with family and it’s here where I begin to get a bit smug. Karli and I had worked together on the post-production for the short film. I had sent her the footage ahead of my visit home for Christmas.

In my haste, I had only sent her the hard drive and a crumpled script, battered in red ink. It wasn’t particularly a testament to my communication skills, but that’s just the perk of having a creative partner who happens to be your sister.

As soon as I knew she was able to come, I began putting a mood board together. While my sister wanted to be totally open-minded about the Riviera, I completely subscribed to the hype: film, fashion, fun.

Packing was an adventure of its own, coupled with having to shoot down many arguments presented by my son as to why he should join us. While he loves film, it was the not having access to French food that he couldn’t get over.

I apologised in hugs and a promise to bring home samples as Karli and I headed for the airport.

Although it was weeks past March, spring hadn’t quite arrived in London, but as the plane soared toward the sunny coast, everyone was in agreement that it was a perfect day to fly.

Glitz and glamour: The Cannes red carpet has been all over the news this week and (inset) Kara Smith’s wardrobe ideas as she geared up to travel to France
Top team: Filmmakers Kara Smith (left) and Karli Powell