After a year-long hiatus, the Cannes Film Festival was back for 2021, pushed from its usual May dates to July. Last night saw the festival’s closing, and Julia Ducournau won the Palme d’Or for her film Titane, making her only the second female director ever to win the festival’s top prize (the first was Jane Campion in 1993 for The Piano).
There was an impressive lineup of films on the schedule this year, and with that plenty of notable moments: the buzz being the daring jewellery worn on the red carpet. Maggie Gyllenhaal, a juror at this year’s festival, wore a single Chopard diamond hoop earring high on her ear, with a matching 43-carat diamond necklace; Paz Vega wore a Chopard dog-themed choker, made of 13 different breeds of canines sparkling with over 9,000 precious stones and Tahitian pearls. Chopard has been the official sponsor of the festival for the past 24 years, so celebrities regularly rely on the maison for arresting red carpet jewels.
Chopard is a family-run watchmaking and jewellery brands, led by siblings Caroline and Karl-Friedrich Scheufele, who share the title of co-presidents. While Karl-Friedrich manages the men’s collection, Caroline is responsible for the women’s collection, including the annual Red Carpet Collection that celebrates her ongoing love story with cinema. This year, the 74 high-jewellery pieces of the Red Carpet Collection symbolically mark the 74th year of the Cannes festival. Among the Chopard collections, it combines Caroline’s lively view of the world and the noble skills of the Chopard artisans—from goldsmithing to gemsetting—in the company’s haute joaillerie workshops in Geneva.
The Red Carpet Collection for 2021 is entitled Paradise, and is the realization of Caroline Scheufeles’s dreamy imagination. The collection is a stunning demonstration of jewellery-making prowess and at a private dinner on the pontoon of the Hotel Martinez in Cannes, Caroline expressed a collective emotion of all in attendance, “it feels good to be back to life.” The protagonists of Paradise—a diamond-set butterfly hairclip, diamond set wave earrings made of titanium, a tsavorite and peridot leaf necklace, a captivating ruby and gem-set floral necklace, and plenty suites of emeralds and diamonds—dazzled on the likes of Poppy Delevingne, Emmanuelle Béart, Georgina Rodriguez, Valérie Lemercier, and Amy Jackson.
During the two-week festival, Chopard took over the rooftop at the Hotel Martinez, transforming it into a club overlooking the Croisette. By day, the locale made for intimate viewing rooms of the Red Carpet Collection and by night it became a quasi nightclub where “good friends, new friends, old friends, friends from all over the world,” as Caroline put it, convened. And as if any confirmation were needed, “Diamonds will always be a girl’s best friend,” stated the co-president. “Emeralds, rubies, and sapphires too. Get your credit cards ready.”
The Red Carpet Collection was protagonist on the red carpet at Cannes, a festival that chased away pandemic gloom. “The epidemic is not conquered,” Thierry Frémaux, the festival’s artistic director, stated just hours before the curtain was raised on the 74th edition. And now, after final curtain call, the heed to be reasonable and careful did not fall on deaf ears. But cinema, at least for now, seems to be back.