Cannes Looks to Ease Access for Vaccinated U.S. Visitors; No Quarantine for Tested U.K. Visitors (EXCLUSIVE)

Cannes Placeholder Red Carpet
Courtesy of Cannes Film Festival

The Cannes Film Festival has obtained an exemption of quarantine for tested visitors coming from the U.K. and other countries designated “orange” under the European Union’s system for travel in the COVID-19 era.

Industry guests and talents attending Cannes won’t need to quarantine for seven days upon entering France, even if they haven’t been fully vaccinated 15 days before the start of the festival. They will, however, be required to show a negative PCR test and get tested every 48 hours during the fest, unless they can show proof of immunity via a positive antibody test or RT-PCR test taken within 15 days and completed within six months.

Meanwhile, the festival is currently dealing with the limitations of the EU Digital COVID Certificate — commonly called “health pass” — that officially launches on July 1. The certificate is meant to facilitate travel within Europe and ease the pressure for multiple testing by allowing people to receive a QR code once they get tested or vaccinated, and use it as official proof.

Vaccinated U.S. visitors are not presently eligible for this health pass. As such, they would, in principle, need to get tested every two days during the festival. But organizers are in active talks with French authorities to allow accredited U.S. visitors to attend the festival with their vaccination card and not be required to undergo PCR testing every 48 hours.

“Since the U.S. has recently become designated as ‘green’ due to its low incidence of COVID-19 cases and the large percentage of vaccinated people, we are quite confident that a solution will be found before the start of the festival,” a Cannes spokesperson said. “But they will absolutely need to come to Cannes with their vaccine certificate, otherwise they will need to get tested every two days, like any unvaccinated attendees.”

As Variety previously announced, a large tent will be used as a testing lab on site, where salivary RT-PCR tests will be administered. They will be free for both French and international visitors, with results available within six hours. A similar system was successfully used for the French Open (Roland Garros) and the 24 Hours of Le Mans race, among other events.

The Cannes Film Festival will kick off on July 6 with the world premiere of Leos Carax’s “Annette,” starring Adam Driver and Marion Cotillard, as well as a tribute to Jodie Foster, who will receive an honorary Palme d’Or.