All of the most opulent and OTT gowns from the Cannes Film Festival

24th May 19 | Beauty

Please don’t expect to see anything low-key at this event.

France Cannes 2019 Pain and Glory Red Carpet

“Less is more” might be an often-repeated fashion adage, but you can’t help but think it’s a bit, well, boring.

Luckily, no one at the Cannes Film Festival has ever followed that advice. The two-week event on the French Riviera might ostensibly be about films, but let’s face it: we’re really only there for the gowns.

It’s an opportunity for famous faces to wear extravagantly over-the-top outfits, which would look just a bit out of place on any other red carpet and yet somehow are right at home in Cannes. As the festival wraps up on Saturday, here are some of the boldest ensembles…

The glitter…

France Cannes 2019 A Hidden Life Red Carpet
Aishwarya Rai Bachchan (Joel C Ryan/AP)

Aishwarya Rai Bachchan is a regular fixture at Cannes, and a welcome one because she always goes above and beyond normal red carpet attire. On one night, she wore a gown which from Jean-Louis Sabaji Couture – on first glance it looks like golden armour, but then you realise the heavily embossed pattern gives a holographic effect as it catches the light.

Just in case this wasn’t enough, the long train of the dress had six layers for added drama. Rai Bachchan’s stylist Aasthma Sharma told Pinkvilla: “The high colour changing foiled leather, structured shoulder sleeve, the sexy neckline, it all synced in just perfect. It was just right balance of oomph and edge.”

France Cannes 2019 The Best Years of a Life Red Carpet
Helen Mirren (Joel C Ryan/AP)

Dressed in a rose gold Elie Saab gown, what really stole the show was Helen Mirren’s matching pale pink hair. Even though it washed out and Mirren returned to her normal blonde shade the following day, how can you not love a 73-year-old legend who’s still having fun with her hair colour?

France Cannes 2019 Rocketman Red Carpet
Sara Sampaio (Joel C Ryan/AP)

Model Sara Sampaio wore this stunning Rami Kadi suit to the showing of Rocketman. As an outfit, it couldn’t be better suited to a biopic of Elton John – it’s sparkly, costumey and a lot of fun.

The froof…

(Joel C Ryan/AP)

Red carpets of 2019 aren’t complete without at least one Giambattista Valli creation. The brand has become known for opulent gowns made from layers and layers of tulle. Deepika Padukone’s lime green dress was even more experimental – she matched it with pale pink bows and a headwrap, and the long train was set off by the mullet cut.

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Actor Aja King’s take on froofiness wasn’t as tulle heavy as Padukone’s, but still phenomenal. The pale orange colour of her Zac Posen gown with voluminous sleeves was perfect for the climate of the south of France.

France Cannes 2019 La Belle Epoque Red Carpet
Aishwarya Rai Bachchan (Joel C Ryan/AP)

When you’re already wearing layers of tulle, you might think that’s enough – but not for Aishwarya Rai Bachchan. She added a fur wrap and a lot of lace to the her all-white outfit, looking a bit like the most extra bride we’ve ever seen.

The floral…

France Cannes 2019 Les Miserables Red Carpet
Elle Fanning (Joel C Ryan/AP)

As a jury member in charge of deciding which films should win a prize, Elle Fanning really had to bring it with her fashion choices. One of the more delicate looks was this floral Valentino gown, which matches her whimsical and feminine style perfectly.

France Cannes 2019 Once Upon a Time in Hollywood Red Carpet
Karolína Kurkova (Joel C Ryan/AP)

Supermodel Karolína Kurkova’s take on a floral gown was slightly edgier, in a hot pink Etro dress with green leafy detailing. Bonus points for this strapless number having pockets, which is a way of making any outfit 10% more fun.

The full-on princess…

France Cannes 2019 Chopard Love Event
Elle Fanning (Vianney Le Caer/AP)

Last but not least is the most Cannes category there is – the inevitable princess dresses. Fanning was peak Disney princess in a bright pink Vivienne Westwood gown, but she was not to be outdone by actor Sririta Jensen’s double-whammy of coloured tiered ballgowns…

France Cannes 2019 Rocketman Red Carpet
Sririta Jensen (Vianney Le Caer/AP)
France Cannes 2019 Les Miserables Red Carpet
Sririta Jensen (Vianney Le Caer/AP)

And then, of course, there were stars like singer Jessica Jung and actor Michelle Rodriguez, who fully leaned into the wedding dress vibe. Sure, they could have easily fit into our ‘froofy’ category, but the structure of both bodices and skirts feels exceptionally princessy rather, than high fashion poofiness.

France Cannes 2019 The Dead Don’t Die Red Carpet
Jessica Jung (Petros Giannakouris/AP)
France Cannes 2019 Once Upon a Time in Hollywood Red Carpet
Michelle Rodriguez (Joel C Ryan/AP)

© Press Association 2019