The Movie Show: Strictly Ballroom at Cannes
In this excerpt from episode 92/13 of SBS's The Movie Show, presenter Margaret Pomeranz interviews director Baz Luhrmann and actor Paul Mercurio about the stunning reception that Strictly Ballroom received at the 1992 Cannes Film Festival. Strictly Ballroom screened in the Un Certain Regard section and won the Festival's Award of the Youth for Foreign Film.
The interviews were conducted the morning after the film's midnight screening at Cannes where it received a lengthy standing ovation. The Cannes Film Festival was the launching pad for the film's phenomenal success. This clip shows, through the reactions of the director and star of the low-budget Australian film, that Strictly Ballroom was shaping up to be a surprise hit across the globe and signalled the beginning of a new era in Australian cinema.
This clip opens with Margaret Pomeranz, filmed outside, speaking to camera. The framing of Pomeranz is poor but is possibly meant to include the building behind her as she makes reference to it in her opening remarks. The sound quality is also not the best but could be the result of deterioration in the recording itself. When it cuts to Baz Luhrmann the background is overexposed but at least he is well-framed. While Luhrmann is given his title as 'director' in the super at the bottom of the screen, it is surprising that Paul Mercurio is not similarly identified as the star. This seems to be an oversight in post-production though Pomeranz does mention that the 'director and star were elated', before cutting to the interviewers.
The short interviews with Luhrmann and Mercurio are interspersed with clips from the film itself. The first clip has the film's title identified but also the words 'Un Certain Regard', which could be confusing to the viewer. The clips from the film are long, but the producer obviously felt it was necessary to give Australian television viewers an extended preview of the film's story and visuals. In doing so, this segment also serves as a useful promotion for the film's forthcoming theatrical release in Australia.