Indigenous director asked to leave Cannes event for shoes | New

The Canadian Dene filmmaker was kicked out by security during a red carpet event at the multi-day festival for wearing traditional moccasins.

Indigenous filmmaker Kelvin Redvers was denied access to the red carpet at the 75th Cannes Film Festival because he was wearing traditional loafers.

The director is a member of the Dene Aboriginal community and grew up in the Northwest Territories of Canada.

“I showed up 100% expecting it to be in the realm of things they [would] allow,” Redvers told Canadian news outlet Global News.

The Dene filmmaker said moccasins are “an integral part of our culture.”

“They’re ceremonial, they can be quite special, so if you allow a kilt for someone who’s Scottish, the equivalent would be a pair of moccasins for someone who’s Dene.”

The director traveled to France with a delegation of indigenous filmmakers and was invited to the premiere of Les Amandiers by French-Italian actress Valeria Bruni Tedeschi on May 22.

Festival security officials, however, banned him from stepping on the red carpet, Redvers told several major Canadian media outlets. He was only allowed to return once he changed his shoes.

Hours after the incident, the filmmaker said he met senior festival officials who apologized and invited him to wear loafers on the red carpet during the presentation of David Cronenberg’s Crimes of the Future last Monday.

“It was a really tough experience to have. When it happened I really couldn’t fully process it,” he posted on Facebook, noting that the pair of traditional shoes he wore had was made by his sister.

“I hope things will change in the future, so wearing them is completely normal. The world needs more loafers.


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