As the world turns to the French Riviera to witness some of the most glamorous and spectacular red carpet designs with tulle and jewels as far as the eye can see, the week-long extravaganza at Cannes Film Festival hosts some of the most anticipated cinematic releases of the year, and is unarguably one of the most important events on the fashion calendar.
Unfortunately, in wake of the coronavirus pandemic, this year’s festival—which would have been its 73rd—has been canceled. As the event was scheduled to take place in May, we can’t help but feel nostalgic for the enchantment of years past, from some of the greatest icons of all time.
The festival has initiated a Marché du Film Online, which allows for virtual screenings and meetings to support film professionals. While that means this year we won’t be seeing stars in their greatest ensembles, we can take a look back at some of the most iconic looks that have defined the red carpet.
Princess Diana only attended Cannes Film Festival once, in 1987, but her powder blue chiffon gown by Catherine Walker made waves for its feminine appeal.
In 2017, Rihanna proved it is all in the details when she wore a Dior Haute Couture gown with a matching coat. Accessorized with giant cocktail rings and futuristic white sunnies, of course.
Instantly winning the title for best dressed, Lupita Nyong’o looked almost dream-like, in an ethereal bright green Gucci gown at the 2015 event.
While sparking controversy, the young Bella Hadid cemented her status as a style icon in 2016. The supermodel wore a red Alexandre Vauthier gown with a risque up-to-there slit.
Aishwarya Rai Bachchan
Elle Fanning wearing Dior in 2019 brought some fun to fashion. Wearing an ultra-feminine style inspired by the ‘New Look’ topped off with an elegant black hat, she instantly transported us to the late 1940s.
Sophia Loren made her first appearance on the carpet in 1955. Wearing a corseted strapless gown, she quickly became one of the most iconic and photographed women at the festival.
One of many Madonna looks that made fashion history, the pop legends appearance truly shocked the crowds. In collaboration with Jean-Paul Gaultier, she wore silvery underclothes and a pink silk wrap.
For the 1966 Cannes Film Festival, Catherine Deneuve wore a striped maxi dress with long gloves and bow headband–creating a quirky yet elegant look to remember.
Kristen Stewart wore custom Chanel Haute Couture in 2018, made all the more iconic by her choice to remove her Louboutin heels–fighting the festivals ‘high heels only’ rule.