Word around the campfire sez that Cannes Film Festival honcho Thierry Fremaux doesn’t like the idea of a masked festival starting on Tuesday, July 6. He doesn’t want to half-ass it — Fremaux wants a classic event in which everyone can relax and breathe openly and be human beings while dressed in sweaters and scarves.

World of Reel‘s Jordan Ruimy, who has some kind of pipeline going with a French guy who hears things, reports that Fremaux is mulling the idea of bumping Cannes all the way into October. Maybe. He couldn’t do it concurrent with the big September festivals so he’d have to choose October.

The thinking (please stop me if I’m wrong) is that if worldwide vaccinations proceed at a good pace then maybe things could get back to normal in, say, six or seven months time. Maybe. Right now, as I’m sure most of you agree, the July 6th date (less than five months henceforth) is probably too soon. I don’t think we’ll REALLY be in the clear until the spring of ’22. At best.

If this turns out to be true, I’m very, VERY sorry about Wes Anderson‘s The French Dispatch and Leos Carax‘s Annette once again getting the shaft end of the stick and having to recalculate strategies. If this happens, of course. I know nothing for a fact.

Ruimy #1, posted on 1.18.21: “I reported in January that the Cannes Film Festival was very serious in eyeing a September/October event this year. It turns out the intel was accurate.”

Ruimy #2: “It seems as though the head honcho of the biggest and most important film festival in the world isn’t opposed to moving the event into the fall. [This] would have to do with Fremaux not being a fan of experiencing a ‘middle ground’ version of the festival. Meaning, he wants Cannes 2021 to be without masks or other PPE. And if that’s the case where France requires that people wore masks at large public events, then he’d rather just wait it out saying, ‘The middle ground is the worst.'”

Ruimy #3: “A Cannes that happens after Venice, Telluride, Toronto and potentially NYFF would throw everything out of whack.”

Uptown film festival veteran: “I’ve long suspected that launching Cannes ’21 on July 6th was a pipe dream. It felt weird and wrong that Thierry would even try it. But the fall? Maybe he will meld it with his Lyon thing?”

Festival veteran #2: “Number one on my fest want-see list is Paul Verhoeven‘s nuns-in-the-hot-house film, which he decided to postpone for a year when the last Cannes didn’t happen. I wonder if he’s willing to put it off even further. Moving Cannes into October would mean losing quite a few titles to Venice/Telluride/Toronto, so Idon’t know how many top-grade films would be left for Thierry. And mask-free? I wonder.”