The Weeknd’s The Idol has been confirmed to appear at the 2023 Cannes Film Festival.
According to Deadline, Cannes delegate general Thierry Frémaux verified the appearance of the HBO original series at the competitive festival. Frémaux also expressed that the singer, née Abel Tesfaye, and his co-star, Lily-Rose Depp, are set to make an appearance at the annual French event.
The outlet reported that, historically, television premieres previewed two episodes during the festival, citing David Lynch’s Twin Peaks as a recent example. However, how many episodes HBO will showcase at the event still needs to be confirmed.
In July 2022, HBO unveiled the first teaser for The Idol, offering a glimpse into what fans could expect from the anticipated project. The first teaser illustrated Depp’s world, submerging herself in Tesfaye’s dangerous cult of drugs and celebrity worship.
Alongside Tesfaye and Depp, the HBO series’ cast includes Troye Sivan, Moses Sumney, Jane Adams, Suzanna Son, Dan Levy, Jennie Ruby Jane, Eli Roth, Rachel Sennot, Hari Nef, Mike Dean, South Korean artist Jennie Kim, and Da’Vine Joy Randolph.
While many details haven’t been revealed about the show, there has been much-discussed controversy attached to the project.
In March 2023, Rolling Stone reported that the series had gone “disgustingly off the rails” during development. HBO refuted the claim that the show had a “toxic” environment in a statement, Vanity Fair reports. The network clarified that The Idol underwent a showrunner switch due to “early episodes not [meeting] HBO standards” as opposed to toxicity.
“The creators and producers of The Idol have been working hard to create one of HBO’s most exciting and provocative original programs. The initial approach on the show and production of the early episodes, unfortunately, did not meet HBO standards so we chose to make a change.
“Throughout the process, the creative team has been committed to creating a safe, collaborative, and mutually respectful working environment,” the statement continues. “And last year, the team made creative changes they felt were in the best interest of both the production and the cast and crew. We look forward to sharing The Idol with audiences soon.”