Jewel thieves have stolen $1 million worth of Chopard jewelry from a hotel right off the Croisette, and while the theft is being called by Deadline one of the "biggest heists to go down in recent Cannes history," it's not actually that unexpected.
The Hollywood Reporter reported that the jewelry, set to be loaned to celebrities for their red carpet appearances, was stolen from a Chopard employee's hotel room in the Novotel, and that the "whole safe was taken out of the wall in the hotel room." Police are also telling THR that the heist "may be an inside job" and are questioning hotel employees. According to Le Monde, the crime occurred at 5 a.m. The festival itself was quick to note that their top prize the Palme d'Or, which is supplied by Chopard, is safe, according to the AFP.
Burglaries at the festival and on the French Riviera itself do not lack historical context. Let us not forget, as Scott Feinberg of The Hollywood Reporter points out on Twitter, Alfred Hitchcock's To Catch a Thief, which starred Cary Grant as a cat burglar, took place in that locale. And there are real-life examples too.
Earlier this year the AFP reported that thieves had stolen a million euros worth of luxury watches from the store on the Croisette's promenade in Cannes. In 2009 armed robbers stole millions of euros worth of jewelry from a Cartier shop in the city.
Last year at the festival two Senegalese soccer stars reported €400,000 worth of wristwatches and jewelry and €30,000 in cash stolen. In their guide to the festival, Indiewire advises: "Also beware of pickpockets. We know of regulars who, after leaving a window open, have had all of their belongings stolen from their rented hotels and flats while they were away." Take this as you may wish, but back in 2010 Lindsay Lohan claimed her passport had been stolen at Cannes, rendering her unable to go to court.
Perhaps one of the more ironic parts of this recent theft—and one that has not escaped the media and the jokesters on Twitter—is that it happened as Sofia Coppola's movie about teenager burglars stealing from stars, The Bling Ring, screened at the festival. Somehow we don't see Emma Watson being that method.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.