CANNES– The Mipcom international TV sales conference has canceled tomorrow evening’s red carpet after flooding from Saturday’s heavy storm knocked out power and caused other problems for hotels and facilities connected to the conference.
The screening of “The Art of More” hosted by Sony Pictures Television is maintained, so is the opening party which will relocate to the Carlton hotel.
Officials with Mipcom organizer Reed Midem said Sunday that despite the flooding that left 17 dead in the region, the conference will proceed as scheduled starting Monday and run through Thursday. However, organizers later confirmed that the traditional opening night red carpet had to tabled for “logistical reasons.” In a statement Reed Midem said “the Grand Hyatt Cannes Hotel Martinez is not in a position to host the Red Carpet.”
The Carlton hotel, the new opening party venue, is not suitable for a red carpet set-up — which requires a portion of the Croisette to be blocked for talent arrivals as well as Cannes police presence, per a Reed Midem rep.
Although today was hot and sunny in Cannes, storms and flooding have snarled travel to the conference for many execs as train service around Nice was temporarily halted. Mipcom’s 2015 personalities of the year — Fox TV Group chairman Dana Walden and Gary Newman — were already in Cannes and had to be hastily relocated to a hotel outside the city. Other U.S. execs who were planning to head across the Atlantic today are facing flight delays and unexpected layovers. Reed Midem spokesperson however said there hadn’t been any cancelation of high-profile guests/speakers so far.
The flooding also extended to the booths set up in the Palais, the convention center that houses the trade show although sources reported that the water damage was minimal. “Just a lot of wet shoes,” one U.S. exec noted via email.
The weekend’s Mip Junior kidvid-focused event saw video library screenings at the Martinez cancelled out of safery concerens, then transferred very rapidly online, and conferences relocated to the Palais des Festivals. The lack of electricity in areas and spotty wifi service were also challenging for execs who came expecting to network and schmooze. Instead some werew left looking in disbelief Sunday morning at their cell phones which failed even in the Carlton to pick up an Internet connection.