Netflix Blocked out of 2019 Cannes Film Festival

For the second year in a row, Netflix will not screen any films at the Cannes Film Festival.

According to Variety, the streaming service will have no film in or out of competition this May despite ongoing talks between the service and the Festival to settle their differences, including a meeting in Los Angeles just over a week ago with Netflix's Ted Sarandos and Scott Stuber and Cannes artistic director Thierry Fremaux.

The outlet also reports that Netflix currently does not have a film that is sufficiently complete for a May premiere.

It had been believed that the streaming giant would bring Martin Scorsese's The Irishman, on which Netflix reportedly shelled out upward of $140 million, to Cannes. The film had been among the titles Frémaux had been hoping to debut in France, but post-production has been held up due to the special effects work required, meaning that the film will not be ready for a May premiere.

Steven Soderbergh's The Laundromat with Meryl Streep, an untitled project from Noah Baumbach, Timothee Chalamet-starring film The King, and the Safdie brothers' Uncut Gems had also been among the titles eyed for the festival, though none will enter the competition.

News of the streaming service's exclusion from the festival follows the 2017 controversy after Tilda Swinton adventure Okja and Noah Baumbach's starry The Meyerowitz Stories were placed in the competition line up. As a result of France's typical process of a 36-month wait after a film's theatrical release before it can head to a streaming platform, the films' inclusion caused backlash from French theater owners.

Cannes later announced a new rule which required films to release in French theaters before they could be eligible for the festival's esteemed jury awards, resulting in Netflix being forced to back out of the festival.

Netflix kept its films, such as Academy Award-winner Roma and titles such as Orson Welles' The Other Side of the Wind, from Cannes in 2018, instead taking them to the 75th Venice International Film Festival, where Roma won the Golden Lion.

"We want our films to be on fair ground with every other filmmaker," Sarandos said at the time. "There's a risk in us going in this way and having our films and filmmakers treated disrespectfully at the festival. They've set the tone. I don't think it would be good for us to be there."

Netflix's continued absence from Cannes also comes as the service's inclusion in the Academy Awards has been questioned. Oscar-winning filmmaker Steven Spielberg is reportedly proposing rules to exclude Netflix films from qualifying for Academy Awards, though the statement drew criticism from others in Hollywood.