Tuesday night marked the official start of the Cannes Film Festival as stars graced the red carpet at the luxurious Grand Theatre Lumiere to pay tribute to Hollywood luminary Meryl Streep before enjoying the opening screening of this year’s film, The Second Act. More on this: Cannes Film Festival 2024 commences with French comedy The Second Act and prestigious Palme d’Or awarded to Meryl Streep

Meryl Streep (right) is photographed with French actress Juliette Binoche as she accepts the Honorary Palme d’Or at the Opening Ceremony of the 77th Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, southern France, on May 14, 2024. (AFP)

Cannes 2024 premiere

The ensemble of the French comedy, including Lea Seydoux and Vincent Lindon, were accompanied by Jane Fonda, Heidi Klum, Messi, the canine sensation from the 2023 Palme d’Or triumph Anatomy Of a Fall, and the current judging panel, led by Greta Gerwig.

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Prior to the ceremony, French vocalist Zaho de Sagazan serenaded the audience with David Bowie’s Modern Love in tribute to Gerwig’s captivating black-and-white dance sequence in “Frances Ha.”

Gerwig joyfully sang along and appeared profoundly moved by the rendition, culminating in de Sagazan approaching the stage to kiss her hand. When Streep graced the stage donning an elegant white gown and black-framed glasses, the crowd erupted in a lengthy ovation, with Juliette Binoche donned in a striking red attire welcoming her.

Words from Meryl

“You revolutionized how we perceive women in the realm of cinema,” expressed Binoche, visibly emotional and struggling to maintain composure during her speech. “Yet, you possess a humility not commonly found, much like myself.”

Streep – renowned for her roles in films like Death Becomes Her, Mamma Mia!, and The Iron Lady – expressed gratitude to numerous individuals. Reflecting on the montage showcasing all her cinematic endeavors, she remarked, “It feels like gazing out the window of a speeding train.”

“My mother, who was almost always right, told me ‘Meryl, darling, you’ll see. It all goes by so quickly. So quickly.’ And it has. Except for my speech,” Streep shared with the audience.

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