Cinephile vs 3 Days in Cannes Accreditation: Which Cannes Film Festival Pass is For You?

Cannes Accreditation Registration at Cannes Film Festival 2017

It’s that time of year again. February is the month when accreditations open for the Cannes Film Festival! Including the Cinephile accreditation and 3 days in Cannes accreditation, for us lowly non-Film Professionals. When I last attended Cannes in 2017, there was only one choice of accreditation for me: Cinephile.

And it was an easy choice. I cannot recall ever producing a movie in my 26 (almost 27) years, nor have I successfully auditioned my way onto a feature film. But I do remember achieving a Drama and Screen Studies degree and I am quite an avid film buff (if I do say so myself). So the Cinephile pass was my only option!

But in 2018, Festival de Cannes released a new pass named ‘Three Days in Cannes’ which has continued every year since including this year, 2020. And on the surface, it seems like the requirements are similar (a demonstratable passion for cinema, etc.) but the perks and benefits are different. If you are struggling to decide between the Cinephile accreditation and 3 Days in Cannes accreditation, then hopefully this post will help! Let’s take a look at the pros and cons and which Cannes Film Festival pass is right for you…

Cinephile Pass vs 3 Days in Cannes Accreditation

Cinephile vs 3 Days in Cannes Accreditation: Which Cannes Film Festival Pass is For You? |

1. Age Restrictions

Cinephile Accreditation: No specified age restrictions, simply ‘school-age’ and upwards.

Three Days in Cannes Accreditation: 18 to 28-year-olds only.

Let’s start off with a super easy difference between the two accreditations. Will you be over 28 years of age when the next Cannes Film Festival is scheduled? Then apologies to my over-the-hill, past-your-sell-by-date amigos, but you can stop reading right here. You’re only eligible for the Cinephile badge.

The Three Days in Cannes pass is also known as the ‘youth’ pass for this reason. So I will be known as ‘young’ by the powers that be at Festival de Cannes for another year, at least.

The Cinephile pass continues to be open for school groups, film students and film club/association members of all ages.

Read more of my Cinephile Badge guides here:

How to Apply for Cannes Film Festival Accreditation if you’re a Regular Cinephile

Cannes Film Festival: How to see Films with a Cinephile Badge

Cinephile vs 3 Days in Cannes Accreditation: Which Cannes Film Festival Pass is For You? |

2. Date Restrictions

Cinephile Accreditation: No date restrictions, valid for the entire duration of the festival.

Three Days in Cannes Accreditation: First three days or last three days of the festival only.

It shouldn’t shock you that the ‘Three Days in Cannes’ pass is exactly what it says it is. Valid for three days of the festival. And when you apply, you select whether you want to apply for the first or last three days.

The Cinephile pass is valid for the whole duration of the film festival, just like any other film professional or press pass. So, if you’re not able to go to Cannes for the first or last three days, then obviously the Cinephile pass is the one to choose.

But why would someone choose 3 Days in Cannes accreditation over the Cinephile accreditation if the latter offers no date restrictions? Because of the perks, my fellow film fanatics, the perks…

Cannes Cinephile sign at the Cannes Film Festival 2017

3. Access Restrictions

Cinephile Accreditation: Cannes Cinéphiles Programme, limited access to other programmes only.

Three Days in Cannes Accreditation: Official Selection Programme and access to Palais des Festivals.

This is the main difference between both passes: the films you’re allowed to see and where you’re physically able to go.

There are lots of cinemas and films to watch outside of the Palais des Festivals (the main venue where big premieres happen and where the film professionals hang out between films). Most film professionals won’t look twice at those other cinemas and programmes in Cannes, as they’re more for Cinephile pass holders. Cinephile pass holders can only go inside the Palais des Festivals when they have an invitation for a film, which they pick up at the Cinephile tent. If you want to know more about what films are open to Cinephile pass holders, read my post on it here.

But the 3 Days in Cannes accreditation works more like a film professional pass. You are allowed inside the Palais des Festivals and can drink as much free Nespresso as you want. You can also request films in the Official Selection prior to the film festival (like a member of the press would), rather than just turning up on the day and seeing what’s left. Which is what the Cinephiles have to do!

Inside Palais des Festivals at Cannes Film Festival 2017
Inside the Palais des Festivals

4. Application Requirements

Cinephile Accreditation: School groups, film students, film or cinema club.

Three Days in Cannes Accreditation: Passion for cinema.

It might seem like Three Days in Cannes is the simplest one to apply for. And it is, but with a bit of out of the box thinking, it’s super easy to get a membership of an association related to film/culture. Read more about how to meet the requirements and apply for the Cinephile pass here.

For both accreditations, you’ll need to upload a photo of your passport and a letter of motivation. So you’ll need to actually have examples and be able to express evidence of this ‘passion for cinema’ that you have. It’s quite easy for me because I have this blog and I’m a member of the Large Association of Movie Blogs and a Film degree. But maybe you have an obscure favourite filmmaker or a nice story about how you got into film?

Cinephile vs 3 Days in Cannes Accreditation: Which Cannes Film Festival Pass is For You?

So, is Cinephile or 3 Days in Cannes Accreditation best for you?

I can’t personally say either way which one is better as I’ve only attended on the Cinephile pass. Though I’m applying for the 3 Days in Cannes accreditation this year. But if you’re happy with the dates and you’re 28 or under, I’d choose the Three Days in Cannes pass, just so you don’t miss the opportunity. Plus, if you’re not a professional, Cannes is expensive and you probably wouldn’t stay in Cannes for much longer than three days anyway.

If you really could not care less about getting into the Palais des Festivals and just want to see as many films as you can over a few days, then the Cinephile pass is probably better. But if you’re young and you want to get into the film industry or film press but haven’t quite made it there yet, then Three Days in Cannes is better professionally as you’re more likely to meet other industry people. And you still have plenty of opportunities to watch lots of films!

Cannes Cinephile tent at the Cannes Film Festival 2017

If I have 3 Days in Cannes Accreditation, is the first 3 or last 3 days better?

The main reason, I think, the first and last 3 days are the dates on offer is because they’re the quietest times of the festival. And it might not seem like there is any discernible difference between either of the dates, so which ones should you choose on your application?!

The first three days of the festival are much more likely to be attended by industry people. They’re fresh, energized, and they haven’t yet entered a zombified state of too many sleepless nights partying in the American Pavillion, kept lucid on a concoction of Berocca and Nescafe. And many f*ck off after one week anyway and don’t stay until the end. So if you have industry aspirations, choose the first three days in Cannes.

The last three days of the festival are quieter, but there is a special programme at the Les Arcades Cinemas just for Three Days in Cannes pass holders. And just for the last three days. So, if watching films is more important to you, then these are the dates to choose!

Which 3 days would I choose?

Personally, I think the last three days appeal to me more. Firstly, I’ve already been to the festival during the first three days, coincidentally, when I attended on the Cinephile pass. I like the idea of being able to wander around the Palais des Festivals and meet interesting people. But I’m not fussed about making any connections. Also, I think it’ll be easier to see the films I want to see if there are fewer people at the festival.

But we’ll see, eh?

Almost Ginger blog owner at the Cannes Film Festival 2017
My crazy self at the Cannes Film Festival in 2017!

And that’s my guide to whether the cinephile pass or 3 days in Cannes accreditation is right for you! Are you planning on visiting Cannes this year? Let me know in the comments below!

Read more of my Cannes Film Festival guides:

The Ultimate Cannes Film Festival Guide: EVERYTHING First Timer’s Need to Know

How to Apply for Cannes Film Festival Accreditation if you’re a Regular Cinephile (AKA not Nicole Kidman)

Cannes Film Festival: How to See Films with a Cinephile Badge

Cannes Film Festival: How to See Films Without a Badge/Accreditation

6 Things to do in Cannes for Film Lovers

Cinephile vs 3 Days in Cannes Accreditation: Which Cannes Film Festival Pass is For You? |

12 thoughts on “Cinephile vs 3 Days in Cannes Accreditation: Which Cannes Film Festival Pass is For You?

  1. Teo says:

    Hi Rebecca, thanks for the informative and funny/witty article. Was wondering what is the difference in price to attend with either of these accreditations? Is there a cost to submit and then to attend for each of these? Also is there any difference in cost or otherwise for the Cinephile accreditation as a student vs film club member?
    Thanks, Teo

    • Rebecca says:

      Thanks so much for your comment, Teo! All passes are 100% free 🙂 Some of the tickets with the cinephile pass at the cinephile cinemas have a small price, but the accreditations themselves are free. Hope that helps!

  2. Fernando says:

    Hi, I really liked your article. I’m trying the accreditation for this year’s “3 days in Cannes”, but 2 questions just came up, I hope you can answer me. First, do you think it is relatively hard to get an accreditation? Like, if many people apply every year, or if they prioritize some people? (I wanted to know if the application money is worthy it). And second, how long do they usually take to notify you that you have been accepted? Is it way too close to the event date? That last one I wanted to know to make the purchase of flights easier, you know? Thanks right away 🙂

    • Rebecca says:

      Hi Fernando! Thanks so much for your comment! The first thing to know is that Cannes offers accreditation on a first-come, first-served basis. I don’t want to alarm you, but when I got accreditation a few years ago, the applications had already closed by the end of March. So you need to apply right now if you still can! I applied at the beginning of February and found out about 2/3 weeks later. Good luck! 😀

    • Laurie says:

      It’s a little late, but I applied on the first day the accreditation opened and was accepted a few hours later!

  3. Aris says:

    Hi there, I managed to get a cinephile accreditation for this year’s Cannes. In your experience, how formal is the dresscode to attend the screenings? I read that there is a difference between day and evening on how formal it should be.

    • Rebecca says:

      Hey Aris! That’s awesome! Yes, there is 100% a difference. During the day, you can pretty much wear what you want. T-shirt, jeans, and sneakers/trainers are perfect. Some people are slightly more dressed up, but it is not essential. At night, you will need dress shoes (heels for women) and a suit/nice dress for films. I’m not sure if it’s just the Lumiere theatre that requires this dress code or all evening films in the Palais, but it’s good to be prepared.

      • Aris says:

        Thanks for the clarification! Do you know if it has to be black tie (tuxedo with bowtie) or will any suit be enough?

  4. Liangbo Ma says:

    Hi! This is an informative and exciting blog! Actually I just got accredited as a cinephile to go to Cannes, but I am also under 28, so is it possible I could apply to both? The 3 days at Cannes looks so so appealing to me! Your information about the differences helps a lot! Thank you very much!
    Merry May

    • Rebecca says:

      Hey! Thanks so much for your kind words 🙂 I’m afraid if you have one pass you cannot have another. I am not 100% sure how Cannes deals with people applying for two passes but I think they are strict about it. The great thing is you will still have a fantastic time with your cinephile pass!

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