American Buyers Are Anxious as Cannes Presents a Confused Film Industry

At Cannes, weather often provides a handy metaphor to assess the state of the market. Two years ago, downpours were an easy visual aid for the gloomy prognosis; this time, the occasional rains never lasted long, but ominous clouds loomed and an eerie chill swept through the air.

That felt about right. Netflix may not have a big presence at the festival after it made a business decision not to attend last year, but streaming platforms became the regular subject of late-night dinner table conversations, with the specter of Disney+, Apple TV+, and many others around the corner.

“The fact is everything is going to change so quickly that in a couple of years we will face a completely different situation in terms of distribution and marketing the films,” said Alberto Barberi, the artistic director of the Venice International Film Festival, from his temporary Cannes office. “It’s very curious.
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