Kim Novak will be in attendance at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival, festival organizers have announced. Novak will be present at a Cannes Classics screening of Alfred Hitchcock’s 1958 psychological thriller Vertigo, which has been recently restored. For all it’s worth, Vertigo was the top movie at the most recent (2012) Sight & Sound decennial poll of film critics and filmmakers. (Photo: Kim Novak Vertigo.)
Vertigo was also a source of controversy in early 2012, when Kim Novak took out an ad in one of the trade publications claiming she felt she had been violated ("I want to report a rape") after finding bits from Bernard Herrmann’s Vertigo music in Ludovic Bource’s eventually Oscar-winning The Artist score.
Besides the Vertigo screening, Kim Novak will also be a presenter at Cannes’ closing ceremony on Sunday, May 26. According to the festival’s press release, Novak first attended Cannes in 1959, for the presentation of Delbert Mann’s May-December romantic drama Middle of the Night, co-starring Fredric March.
Kim Novak movies
Besides Vertigo and Middle of the Night, Kim Novak’s other key movies include Joshua Logan’s Best Picture Academy Award nominee Picnic (1955), co-starring William Holden and Rosalind Russell; Mark Robson’s Judy Holliday-Jack Lemmon comedy Phffft (1955), which gave Novak the chance to display her flair for comedy; and George Sidney’s musical Pal Joey (1957), as one of two beautiful women — Rita Hayworth was the other — in (undeserving) singer Frank Sinatra’s life.
Starring Tyrone Power, the musical biopic The Eddy Duchin Story (1956) was a huge hit, while George Sidney’s biopic Jeanne Eagels (1957), though less popular, provided Novak with the opportunity to go dramatic.
Also of note are Richard Quine’s Bell, Book and Candle (1958), with Kim Novak as a witch, and Quine’s melodrama Strangers When We Meet (1960), in which she has an adulterous affair with Kirk Douglas.
Also of note: Billy Wilder’s comedy Kiss Me, Stupid (1964), co-starring Ray Walston and Dean Martin, which was much criticized upon its release but that has since found a devoted following; Robert Aldrich’s Sunset Blvd.-like The Legend of Lylah Clare (1968), with Peter Finch and Ernest Borgnine; and, for sheer weirdness, David Hemmings’ Nazi era-set Just a Gigolo, a 1978 mess of a movie that’s a must-see thanks to its cast: Novak, David Bowie, Sydne Rome, Curd Jürgens, Maria Schell, and Marlene Dietrich.
Kim Novak today
Kim Novak, who turned 80 last February 13, currently spends much of her time painting and enjoying nature (and her llama herd) in her Oregon ranch. Her last appearance in front of the camera was in Mike Figgis’ Liebestraum (1991), which, according to her, wasn’t exactly a great experience: “Ah, same old Hollywood. I don’t need this.”
Kim Novak quote via The Telegraph.
Kim Novak Vertigo photo via the 2013 Cannes Film Festival.