The Two Faces of Cannes: Gilles Jacob

Eye of the storm

"But," Jacob adds after thinking it over, "it did not happen so often."

For now, Jacob says he's planning his next move, that retirement isn't anywhere in the cards, and that he's trying not to think too much about the 60th anniversary "because I'm superstitious."

But come Cannes 2007's opening night screening (of Wong Kar-Wai's debut English-language feature, My Blueberry Nights), and Jacob will be right back where he belongs, at the top of those red stairs.

"Cannes is like a Catholic liturgy. To climb the stairs is a kind of ascension — like going to heaven."

And when you get to the top, Jacob says with an ear-to-ear grin, "God is there to welcome you!"

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