Troy's Hollywood power lays siege to Cannes

The cast of movie blockbuster Troy were bringing some Hollywood star power to the Cannes Film Festival today.

The cast of movie blockbuster Troy were bringing some Hollywood star power to the Cannes Film Festival today.

Brad Pitt and Orlando Bloom will be joined on the red carpet by Diane Kruger, Eric Bana and Sean Bean.

With a budget rumoured to have tipped $175m (€147m), the swords-and-sandals epic is the most expensive film to date.

It is showing outside the official Cannes competition but is easily the biggest film being screened at this year’s festival.

Based on Homer’s Iliad, the film tells the story of the siege of Troy.

Pitt stars as Achilles, the Greek warrior who leads the attack on the city.

The war is sparked when young Prince Paris (Orlando Bloom) and his elder brother Hector (Eric Bana) visit the kingdom of Sparta on a peace mission.

Paris falls in love with the king’s wife Helen and steals her away to Troy.

The Greeks vow to claim Helen back and conquer Troy, so enlist Achilles to lead a vast army into battle.

The supporting cast of British actors includes Julie Christie, Peter O’Toole, Brian Cox and Saffron Burrows.

O’Toole plays King Priam, father of Paris and Hector, while Sean Bean plays Odysseus, battle-hardened soldier and friend to Achilles.

A worldwide search for a woman to play Helen, the fabled beauty whose face launched a thousand ships, resulted in the casting of Kruger.

The stunning former ballerina was a virtually unknown actress until she landed the part.

Pitt underwent months of training for the movie’s sword scenes and audiences will marvel at his perfectly honed physique.

The actor has already travelled the world promoting Troy, including appearances at the US and European premieres, but this will be the first premiere Bloom has attended.

Shot in Malta, Mexico and Britain’s Shepperton Studios, Troy is directed by German Wolfgang Petersen, whose previous credits include In The Line of Fire, The Perfect Storm and Das Boot.

The film opens in Ireland next week and movie bosses are hoping it will be the summer’s biggest blockbuster – although early reviews have been mixed.

The Hollywood Reporter calls Troy “a protracted and uninvolving affair“ hampered by “corny dialogue“, while trade magazine Variety says Pitt does not live up to his billing.

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