Rebecca Ascher-Walsh
May 15, 2000 AT 04:00 AM EDT

There’s not much to celebrate, but there’s still plenty of celebrating going on: Last night was the first time that many of us crawled home at 5 a.m., fresh from a party celebrating Merchant and Ivory’s ”The Golden Bowl.” The film received mixed reviews, but the party was overwhelming — up at a chateau above Cannes, an intimate affair for 150 turned into an overstuffed dinner for 400. With not enough seats or food (Merchant tried to take over serving at the banquet line, to calm the near-rioters), people fled the gala before dessert was served at 12:30 a.m. and headed for the nearby Hotel Du Cap.

We rode with Jeremy Northam, who was apparently not impressive enough to get past the security guards at the gate, but after being rescued by his agent, we proceeded in to have the first bellinis of the festival. Harvey Weinstein was holding court, Ethan Hawke (who is here with Uma, who’s starring in ”Golden Bowl” and ”Vatel”) wandered around, but mostly the place was packed with execs and agents. It was like being in the Four Seasons bar, and everyone felt so at home we stayed until 4 a.m., when the bar announced that they had run out of champagne.

Far less fun, but phenomenal, is Darren Aronofsky’s new film, ”Requiem for a Dream.” Jared Leto and Ellen Burstyn play drug-addicted son and mother, and the film is grueling in its depiction of how their lives unravel over the course of a year. Not a person left the screening — a total oddity here, where people frequently stop by just to get a sense of the movie. I washed that misery down with a charming movie, ”Famous,” which is directed by Griffin Dunne and produced by Mira Sorvino, who also has a small role. It’s a faux-documentary about an actress who longs to be a celebrity, and it’s a riot to watch, especially here in Cannes.

Luckily, today was a quieter day in terms of movies. I was very excited that I was going to have lunch with Dennis Rodman — he’s here to promote a movie no one can seem to remember the name off — but alas, that was canceled at the last minute. Instead, I’m heading to a party for ”Rollerball,” John McTiernan’s new film, and then I have to attempt to stay awake until midnight, when the party for ”Famous” begins on a yacht in the marina. With blisters on my feet and bags under my eyes, I’m delighted to have reached the halfway mark of the Festival.

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