This is what the Cannes Film Festival is really about

You guys really want to know what the Cannes Film Festival is about? There are some things far more important to you than any red carpet premiere, picture with a celebrity or sexy boat party.

Cannes is a big international gathering for the industry, and like every year, there is a lot of pressure on newcomers to network, make the right contacts and get the most out of the festival. Having a film in Cannes is a big deal, and of course, we want to make the most out of it, but what really counts is this:

Every year Cannes is attended by a big variety of creative people from film distributors to students, movie directors, costume designers, actors and make up artists, but the most important aspect of the festival, is not the business deals or the celebrity parties, but the people you meet, and how you can develop new friendships.

The film industry has always been a collaborative art, and the concept of 'networking' is really about making friends with people you want to work with, and who's values you share. Cannes is the ideal festival to do this because it's structured in a way that you are always likely to bump into people you've already met along the way. Cannes is not a big town. There is only one 'Croisette', and you're bound to have enough time to get to know people if you go every day.

Essentially the 'real deals' for most of us happen after the festival is over, but spending time with the decision makers, the creative talent, and people you like, is what it's all about. If you are staying at the festival long enough, getting to know your peers is far more valuable for your career than the Cannes 'stamp of approval'.

So once you get down there, have a good time. Go to the parties, the informal meet and greets and even head on down to Antibes to chill-out with your new found friends. You never know, these might be the people you team up with in the future, and hey, why not get to share some fun times with them because they might be the ones who support you for years to come.

At the end of the day, all it takes is one person to believe in you, and it can make a huge difference. Be yourself, that's what counts.

Check out our guide on what you should bring to Cannes if you haven't already got the right gear. Only a few short days now!

film industry network members