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Female activists unfurl banner during Cannes red carpet protest

A banner is unveiled at the 75th international film festival (Petros Giannakouris/AP)
A banner is unveiled at the 75th international film festival (Petros Giannakouris/AP)

Protesters have stormed the red carpet at the Cannes Film Festival in the second such incident this week.

A group of women unfurled a banner at the premiere of Holy Spider, letting off black smoke devices and holding their fists in the air.

The banner featured a list of victims of the “129 femicides since the last Cannes festival” in an apparent reference to the number of domestic killings in France.

Video of the event was shared widely on social media and appeared to show security guards observing the protest instead of intervening.

Directed by Ali Abbasi, Holy Spider tells the story of a female journalist investigating a serial killer targeting sex workers in the Iranian city of Mashhad.

It is loosely based on the true case of Saeed Hanaei, a construction worker, who killed 16 women between 2000 and 2001 before he was apprehended by the police.

It is the second protest to take place at Cannes this week.

France Cannes 2022 Holy Spider Red Carpet
Protesters on the red carpet at Cannes (Petros Giannakouris/AP)

On Friday, the premiere of George Miller’s Three Thousand Years Of Longing was interrupted by a woman protesting against sexual violence during the war in Ukraine.

The woman tore off her clothes during the film’s red carpet procession to reveal the message “Stop raping us” written across her torso next to the blue-and-yellow colours of the Ukraine flag.

Security guards quickly encircled her and took her off the red carpet.

The 75th annual festival has already hosted the star-studded premiere for Top Gun: Maverick, which saw Tom Cruise attend for the first time in 30 years.

The event was subject to strict Covid-19 protocols in 2021 but this year’s Cannes has largely done away with pandemic measures.

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