Quentin Tarantino's Once Upon a Time in Hollywood will officially screen in competition at the 2019 Cannes Film Festival. Four years after his Western The Hateful Eight, the Oscar-winning auteur is back with another one of his trademark period pieces - this one taking audiences back to California in 1969. Starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Brad Pitt as an aging TV star and his stunt double, the film follows the two as they look to reclaim their former fame amidst a changing landscape. Margot Robbie also co-stars as Sharon Tate.
Based on the pedigree of the talent on both sides of the camera, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood was clearly one of the most anticipated films of 2019 and possibly an awards contender when it's all said and done. Sony's clearly excited by what they have, scheduling the movie for a prime summer release where it'll be opening in the shadow of Spider-Man: Far From Home and The Lion King. Earlier this year, the marketing campaign kicked off in earnest with the first Once Upon a Time in Hollywood trailer, and it fortunately won't be much longer until fans know if the film lives up to the hype.
The Cannes Film Festival officially announced Once Upon a Time in Hollywood has been added to the lineup as an in-competition title. There were rumors the film would be at Cannes, but was never confirmed until now because there was uncertainty if it'd be ready in time. But Tarantino worked diligently in his editing room, and 25 years after Pulp Fiction, will once again be in the running for the coveted Palme D'or.
Cannes takes place later this month, running from May 14-25. As hinted at above, Tarantino has a lot of history with the festival. In addition to winning the Palme D'or for Pulp Fiction back in 1994, he was nominated for Cannes' top prize in 2007 (Death Proof) and 2009 (Inglourious Basterds). Time will tell if Once Upon a Time in Hollywood can join those ranks, but it certainly has the makings of another Tarantino classic. It was obviously very important to the director that the film be completed for the Cannes crowd, so he feels like he has something special on his hands. And based on Tarantino's track record, it would be a huge surprise if Once Upon a Time in Hollywood did not meet expectations.
While it's still a little too early in the year to be talking about Oscar contenders, the Cannes screening could serve as a launching pad for Once Upon a Time in Hollywood's Academy Award prospects. It was only a year ago Spike Lee's BlacKkKlansman announced itself an Oscar hopeful with a strong showing at Cannes, proving a film doesn't need a Telluride or Venice premiere to enter the conversation. Both Pulp Fiction and Inglourious Basterds became major players on the awards circuit after their respective Cannes screenings, so ideally Once Upon a Time in Hollywood will follow suit and maybe be the one to land Tarantino his first Best Director trophy.
Source: Cannes Film Festival
- Once Upon A Time In Hollywood (2019) release date: Jul 26, 2019