The 2020 edition of the Cannes Film Festival has been officially postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The festival, who have repeatedly insisted that they would go ahead with the 2020 edition despite the growing concerns around the current COVID-19 pandemic, have succumbed to the reality of the situation and put their event on ice.
“Today, we have made the following decision: The Festival de Cannes cannot be held on the scheduled dates, from May 12 to 23,” a statement reads on the festival’s website.
“Several options are considered in order to preserve its running, the main one being a simple postponement, in Cannes, until the end of June (or) beginning of July 2020.”
The statement from Cannes continues: “As soon as the development of the French and international health situation will allow us to assess the real possibility, we will make our decision known, in accordance with our ongoing consultation with the French government and Cannes’ city hall as well as with the festival’s board members, film industry professionals and all the partners of the event.”
“In the meantime, the Festival de Cannes lends its vocal support to all of those who firmly call on everyone to respect the general lockdown, and ask to show solidarity in these difficult times for the entire world.”
The festival was originally planned to start on 12 May and run up until 23 May.
The ongoing pandemic of coronavirus disease was first officially identified in December 2019 in Wuhan, the capital of Hubei in China. As of March 19th, more than 220,313 cases of COVID-19 have been officially confirmed but the actual number is thought to be much higher due to substantial under-reporting of cases.
With more than 8,980 people having died from the virus, COVID-19 has now spread into more than 150 other countries—including mainland Europe, South America and North America. Given the exponential growth in cases in countries like Italy and Spain, the WHO have now stated that Europe was the current centre of the pandemic.