It might be raining on the Cannes parade, and security out of hand, some of the films, well…
…but there’s still one bright note on a gray, spitting Riviera first festival friday. The bike of the film, Easy Rider, forty one years old this week, is back inside Vogue territory once more, back at the festival where the film and cast – Peter Fonda, Dennis Hopper, Jack Nicholson and Karen Black – won a vital reprieve from festival goers and organisers.
The master builder of the easy rider Captain America replica….Jack Lepler, is here too.
The prequel, Easy Rider II, is back. The secrets behind the film, the legend behind the story (what Jack doesn’t know he isn’t telling, not about the bike nor the original film no how, it aint worth saying or knowing). Cannes played more than a bit part in the history of the original. If it weren’t for the 22nd festival in 1969, the year after the student held-up Cannes, the original Easy Rider might not have seen the light of day. American distributors wouldn’t touch the film, were embarrassed by it.
Easy Rider was a big part of the independent cinema rebirthing of Hollywood, after years of studio failures and excesses. And it was Cannes that gave the story behind the bike its traction, gave the new, influential, film its market tread. Easy Rider was a key independent American sixties production, one of several that created a trend that in effect saved Hollywood from a crippling decline.