The Great Gatsby To Open Cannes

Baz Luhrmann to kick off 66th festival

The Great Gatsby

Baz Luhrmann's The Great Gatsby has been picked to open this year's Cannes Film Festival. The Australian's adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald will kick off the festival in a swirl of '20s glitz and glamour on May 15 at the Grand Théâtre Lumière.

The annoucement, which follows news that Steven Spielberg will be heading up the Festival's jury, should see an overload of A-listers, including Gatsby himself Leonardo DiCaprio, strolling the Croisette in May. As Luhrmann points out in a statement, it also takes Gatsby back home.

"F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote some of the most poignant and beautiful passages of his extraordinary novel just a short distance away at a villa outside Saint-Raphael," the director notes, adding, "It is a great honor for all those who have worked on The Great Gatsby to open the Cannes film festival."

Cannes has always loved an auteur, and these days they don't come much more auteur-like than Baz Luhrmann, whose first film, Strictly Ballroom, screening at the festival 21 years ago. It isn't the first time the Aussie has had the honour of launching the festival either. Moulin Rouge! was the opening film in 2001.

Gatsby will see the festival's cineastes don 3D glasses for only the second time following Pixar's Up in 2009.

For more on the festival, head to our pick of Cannes' greatest opening flicks, taking in Amarcord, Moulin Rouge! and Bad Education.