CANNES WATCH: Hilary brilliant, Girls get traction

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Actress Hilary Swank, center, arrives for the screening of The Homesman at the 67th international film festival, Cannes, southern France, Sunday, May 18, 2014. (Photo by Arthur Mola/Invision/AP)

Actress Hilary Swank, center, arrives for the screening of The Homesman at the 67th international film festival, Cannes, southern France, Sunday, May 18, 2014. (Photo by Arthur Mola/Invision/AP)

Actress Hilary Swank arrives on the red carpet for the screening of The Homesman at the 67th international film festival, Cannes, southern France, Sunday, May 18, 2014. (Photo by Arthur Mola/Invision/AP)

The cast of The Expendables 3, from left, Kelsey Grammer, Wesley Snipes, Sylvester Stallone, Ronda Rousey and Mel Gibson hold up banners reading, “Bring back our girls”, part of a campaign calling for the release of nearly 300 abducted Nigerian schoolgirls being held by Nigerian Islamic extremist group Boko Haram, as they arrive for the screening of The Homesman at the 67th international film festival, Cannes, southern France, Sunday, May 18, 2014. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)

Director Tommy Lee Jones arrives for the screening of The Homesman at the 67th international film festival, Cannes, southern France, Sunday, May 18, 2014. (AP Photo/Thibault Camus)

FILE – In this Sunday, Oct. 21, 2007 file photo, French actor Gerard Depardieu poses for photographers on the red carpet of the Rome Film Festival. Gerard Depardieu was in Cannes on Saturday, May 18, 2014 for a screening of his hotly anticipated film “Welcome To New York,” about disgraced former International Monetary Fund chief Dominique Strauss-Khan. (AP Photo/Riccardo De Luca, File)

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CANNES, France (AP) — The Associated Press is all over the Cannes Film Festival — from its glitzy premieres to the celeb parties and quirky moments in between. Here’s what reporters have seen and heard:

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LOOK OF THE DAY: HILARY SWANK

It was a coup for Donatella Versace: Hilary Swank was brilliant in white on the Cannes red carpet Sunday for the premiere of “The Homesman,” with a silk one-shoulder gown from Atelier Versace, twinned with a 1000-watt smile.

The killer dress came from the Italian house’s couture line and was gathered at the waist and draped at the back.

Setting the look off, she wore Chopard earrings in white gold set with oval-shaped tanzanites, opals and triangle-cut 2-carat diamonds. It was one of the most beautiful styles seen all festival.

“The Homesman” was directed by Tommy Lee Jones, who also stars in it.

— Thomas Adamson — http://twitter.com/ThomasAdamsonAP

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‘EXPENDABLES’ BOOST NIGERIAN GIRLS

The “Bring Back Our Girls” message has made its way to the Cannes red carpet for the second night in a row.

This time, it was the cast of “The Expendables 3″ — which includes Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Mel Gibson, Harrison Ford, Jason Statham, and Wesley Snipes — who each held up signs bearing the message. The phrase refers to the worldwide effort to bring home more than 250 Nigerian schoolgirls kidnapped by the extremist Islamic group Boko Haram a month ago. Despite a multinational effort, they have yet to be recovered.

Salma Hayek brought the message to the red carpet on Saturday night, holding up the sign as she arrived to preview her film “The Prophet.”

“The Expendables 3″ is not an official selection at Cannes, but its stars have made the most of their Cannes visit — arriving on the Riviera Saturday morning in tanks.

— Nekesa Mumbi Moody — http://www.twitter.com/nekesamumbi

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JONES PREMIERES ‘THE HOMESMAN’

In Westerns, women are usually bit players, relegated to fleeting domestic scenes before the men set out on adventure.

On Sunday at the Cannes Film Festival, Tommy Lee Jones premiered a Western from a more female perspective. His “The Homesman” is about a single woman farmer (Hilary Swank) on the Nebraska plains during Westward expansion.

Called “bossy” by suitors, the strong-willed Mary Bee Cuddy volunteers to take three women who have grown crazy on the desolate landscape to Iowa. She enlists an outlaw, played by Jones, to help on the weekslong journey. Cuddy and the women are generally treated as mere cargo in the race West — which Jones said he considers historical roots to sexism today.

“I don’t think there’s a woman in this room who has never felt objectified or trivialized because of her gender,” Jones said to festival reporters. “There’s a reason for that and a history of that, and I think that’s an interesting thing.”

It’s the second time directing a feature for the 67-year-old Jones, whose 2005 “The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada” was warmly received by critics. “The Homesman,” which co-stars Meryl Streep, John Lithgow and Hailee Steinfeld, had a more mixed reaction in Cannes.

Jones declined to see his film as a Western.

“I don’t understand that word,” he said of “genre.” ”It’s a consideration of the history of Westward expansion, a way of looking at what the school children of America learn on the subject of Manifest Destiny.”

— Jake Coyle — http://twitter.com/jake_coyle

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DSK FILM PARTY POKES FUN AT SCANDAL

Abel Ferrara’s movie “Welcome to New York,” inspired by the sex scandal involving the former IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn, has been grabbing headlines, and a secretive party to celebrate it here created even more of a buzz.

The theme for Saturday’s celebration — hosted at Nikki Beach on the Croisette — mirrored the film’s lurid subject matter. Ferrara partied with guests who donned white bath robes, and party bags came with complementary S&M whips, handcuffs, condoms and even tablets labeled “Viagra.”

The film, screened before the party started, stars Gerard Depardieu. He bares all to play unrepentant sex-addict Mr. Devereaux, a man who handles billions of dollars a day and commits a sexual assault on a hotel maid following an orgy.

Though the film comes with a legal disclaimer, there are undeniable parallels between Devereaux and Strauss-Kahn, known as DSK.

In May 2011, Strauss-Kahn was accused of sexually assaulting a New York hotel employee. Charges were ultimately dropped against the Frenchman and he reached an out-of-court settlement with the woman. Strauss-Kahn is charged with aggravated pimping in a separate case in

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