Sport and culture combine as Paris 2024 joins the red carpet at the Cannes Film Festival

By Amelia Fisher-Starzynski, May 24, 2017: Tonight Paris 2024 joined the glittering world of celebrity at the 70th edition of the Cannes Film Festival.

A Paris 2024 delegation climbed the famed 24 steps of the Palais des Festivals, at the invitation of Pierre Lescure, President of the Cannes Film Festival and Thierry Frémaux, Delegate General of the Cannes Film Festival.

France’s new Minister of Sport and Olympic Champion Laura Flessel accompanied Paris 2024 Co-Chairs Tony Estanguet and Bernard Lapasset, Mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo, Valérie Pécresse, President of the Ile-de-France Region, Denis Masseglia, President of the French National Olympic and Sports Committee (CNOSF), Emmanuelle Assmann, President of the French Paralympic and Sports Committee (CPSF) and Thierry Rey, a World and Olympic judo champion and special advisor to the bid.

The delegation’s ascent of the red carpet was followed by an outdoor screening of the film Chariots of Fire at the Cinéma de la Plage in the presence of director, Hugh Hudson.

The Oscar winning film from 1981 is based on the duel between two British athletes competing during the Paris 1924 Olympic Games. Should Paris be successful in its current bid, the 2024 Olympic Games will mark the centenary of this great event.

A number of Paris 2024 athlete ambassadors also joined the delegation in Cannes, including:

• Sarah Ourahmoune, Rio 2016 silver medallist and member of the Paris 2024 Sport and Society Committee
• Martin Fourcade, double Olympic champion and 11-time World Champion biathlete
• Muriel Hurtis, Olympic bronze medal winning athlete at Athens 2004
• Chloé Trespeuch, Sochi 2014 snowboard cross bronze medallist
• Victoria Ravva, French volleyball champion for RC Cannes
• Cyrille Maret, Rio 2016 bronze medal winning judoka

This is the second year Paris 2024 has had a presence at the Cannes Film Festival. In 2016, a delegation led by Paris 2024 Co-Chair and triple Olympic gold medallist Tony Estanguet, triple Olympic champion Marie-Jo Pérec and Victoria Ravva accompanied France’s double gold medal winning judoka, Teddy Riner, for the premier of the film “In the Shadow of Teddy Riner”.

Bernard Lapasset, Paris 2024 Co-Chair, said:

“Sport and culture share a common theme – both take viewers on an emotional journey. Athletes, like actors, are performers and when they step onto the track they invite spectators to share in the experience with them.

By coming to the Cannes Film Festival this year, Paris 2024 reaffirms our strong desire to combine sport with culture in order to share the positive values of Olympism with the greatest number of people.”

Anne Hidalgo, Mayor of Paris, said:

“Cinema, like the sport, is a formidable way to share emotions. Paris is proud to be one of the cinema capitals of the world with the city providing the backdrop for greatest number of film shoots and one of the highest numbers of cinemas per capita of any city.

Hosting hundreds of filmmakers and their crews every year, and screening films from every country every day, this is one of the ways in which our city opens itself up to new perspectives and enriches itself with other cultures. This sense of sharing, this spirit of openness, can be found in the candidature of Paris 2024.”

Laura Flessel, Minister of Sport for France, said:

“A few months ahead of the Host City decision for the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games, the Paris 2024 family is mobilised more than ever.

By gathering at this global event that places our country on the world stage, we are sending a strong message. The Cannes Film Festival is a further demonstration of France’s ability to open up to the world and organise major international events, whether cultural or sporting.”

Valérie Pécresse, President of the Ile-de-France Region, said:

“Excellence, inspiration, sharing…These values are in the DNA of the Ile-de-France Region and can be demonstrated through our support of 14 films in competition at the Cannes Film Festival, this great festival that gives voice to the diversity of cinema around the world.

This is why we are also a founding member of Paris 2024, a project to celebrate sport and culture through the lens of the world’s greatest sporting competition.”

In a joint statement, Pierre Lescure, President of the Cannes Film Festival and Thierry Frémaux, Delegate General of the Cannes Film Festival, added:

“Cinema and modern sport were born at the same time. The Cannes Film Festival is a manifestation, which, like the Olympic Games, celebrates those who dream and provoke emotion. It is above all the symbol of a France that is open to the world and welcomes the cultures of all countries.

By joining the Paris 2024 Bid Committee for this 70th edition, we support the ambition to host the Games and reaffirm that sport and culture share in this celebration.”

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