Cannes Film Festival 2021: High Fashion Is Back!

The celebrity world is only beginning to return to the red carpet, but the 74th Cannes Film Festival was back in full swing for 2021, and so was the high fashion. It was a little later this year (July instead of May) after being canceled in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic. The cool tuxedos and jaw-dropping gowns made their comebacks.  A-listers like Sharon Stone, Matt Damon, Jodie Turner-Smith, Jodie Foster, Sean Penn, and many more made appearances at premieres for big movies like The French Dispatch and Annette. 

Cannes Film Festival 2021 Fashion

The couture truly kicked into high gear for the following celebs in five very different and inspiring looks. Take a look at the amazing fashion on Maria Bakalova, Salma Hayek, Tilda Swinton, Sharon Stone and Regina King.

cannes fashion Maria Bakalova in Tony Ward fountainof30


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Maria Bakalova in Tony Ward

Since starring (and earning an Oscar nomination) in Sacha Baron Cohen’s Borat Subsequent Moviefilm, Bulgarian actress Maria Bakalova has made a name for herself in many stunning looks on the red carpet. For Cannes, where Bakalova made appearances at the movie premiere of Titane and a photocall for her next film, Women Do Cry, she donned retro-style Louis Vuitton looks. But it was a stunning black and white couture number by Tony Ward that really sent her into the fashion stratosphere. 

And to think…we never would have seen the look if she hadn’t posted about it on her Instagram…because for some reason it was not in the regular media. There was a lot to like about this look – the white shirt with the low-cut v-neck, the puffy sleeves, the black skirt, and the blingy belt that tied the whole look together. 

cannes film festival fashion Salma Hayek in blue Gucci fountainof30

Salma Hayek in Gucci at Cannes Film Festival 2021

The stunning Salma Hayek made an appearance in Cannes for the Kering Women in Motion Awards. Ironically her husband, Kering president Francois-Henri Pinault, awarded it to her. It was for “spearheading the award and educational program back in 2014 to bring more women’s voices into the film festival, long before the 5050 by 2020 and #MeToo movements,” Women’s Wear Daily reported

While the award was well deserved, it came as a surprise to Hayek, who was not expecting it. Unsurprisingly though, she was ready to collect in high fashion, donning a striking Gucci gown with interesting shades of blue in sequins that sparkled through the night. I’d love to hear what others thought of this look, as I’m still 50/50 on it. 

Tilda Swinton in Haider Ackermann Cannes 2021 fountainof30

Tilda Swinton in Haider Ackermann

There’s so much to love about Tilda Swinton‘s fashion. I adore the way she mixes colors and textures and how her pieces straddle the line between androgynous and totally feminine. Once again, she didn’t disappoint, wearing a colorful Haider Ackermann look for the premiere of The French Dispatch, which she stars in with Timothee Chalamat and Bill Murray, among others. 

When looking for more information about this look, I read a comment on a post about her from the Red Carpet Fashion Awards, which said, “She can do no wrong. Love the colours, cut and contrast of materials. She is so unique an [sic] unapologetically herself. I love this woman.” This to me just screamed Tilda Swinton and is exactly who she is – unapologetically. 

It’s the strange greenish gold sleeves, the cropped pink jacket, the orange skirt and just the color combinations all around that do it for me. Not everyone can pull it off, but Swinton certainly gave us a look to remember, and one that was well overdue for at least a year. 

cannes Sharon Stone in Dolce & Gabbana Alta Moda fountainof30

Sharon Stone in Dolce & Gabbana Alta Moda

Sharon Stone is an experienced veteran at Cannes and she continues to prove it by showcasing the most show-stopping looks, including this sky blue tulle gown by Dolce & Gabbana. The off-the-shoulder gown was accompanied by floral appliques that were stitched on it. I found the whole thing a bit messy, but it certainly made a statement and Cannes fans lapped it up. The gown shouted, “Look at me, look at me!” and that is exactly what Stone wanted. 

With wild hair, tons of bold bling by Chopard, and a strut that made the spectators turn, Sharon Stone essentially had another striking Cannes moment. It’s something she can’t get enough of, even if she’s probably used to it. 

Cannes fashion Regina King in Schiaparelli fountainof30

Regina King in Schiaparelli

While the celebs are known for pulling out all the stops for the annual amfAR gala that takes place during the Cannes Film Festival, it was Regina King that stole the show this time around. 

The actress and director arrived at the event wearing a couture Schiaparelli gown with a sparkling bodice made of bugle beads. The bodice was accentuated with an extravagant ball gown skirt and matching black and white shawl. For added effect, stunning earrings and hair tied up in a high, strict bun rounded out the look. 

At a time when Cannes (and the red carpet scene in general) is attempting to find its footing once again amidst social media and virtual celeb interviews that probably make fashion less exciting, Regina King has hit back with a look that screams the glamour of Old Hollywood with the contemporary style of today. 

 It’s exactly what we were hoping for with the return of high fashion in person. 

– Simona Shemer

Photos: Maria Bakalova, @mariabakalovaofficial Instagram | Salma Hayek, Yahoo | Tilda Swinton, Red Carpet Fashion Awards | Sharon Stone, Red Carpet Fashion Awards | Regina King, Yahoo 

You may also like to read more of Simona’s celebrity style posts like 5 of The Most Fashionable Female Athletes of 2021 and Stars Don Stunning Fashion On The Oscars 2021 Red Carpet.

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cannes film festival fashion 2021 fountainof30

1 thought on “Cannes Film Festival 2021: High Fashion Is Back!”

  1. That Tony Ward outfit…swoon. Regina King’s dress is a big win on her! Also the D&G. Sharon pulls that off so well. Do not like Salma’s dress, it does nothing for her on camera. I love looking at fashion and what i like and don’t like!


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