A clown at Cannes: Bill Murray at the Riviera fest

May 17, 2012 - 9:56 AM
France Cannes Moonrise Kingdom Premiere

Actor Bill Murray arrives for the opening ceremony and screening of Moonrise Kingdom at the 65th international film festival, in Cannes, southern France, Wednesday, May 16, 2012. (AP Photo/Joel Ryan)

CANNES, France (AP) — Clad in a plaid jacket that could have come out of Rodney Dangerfield's wardrobe in "Caddyshack," Bill Murray clashed with traditional Cannes fashion but made the most of the film festival in every other way.

Murray has been soaking up the atmosphere on the French Riviera, where he joined other stars for the opening night premiere of Wes Anderson's "Moonrise Kingdom." The 61-year-old actor has been to Cannes before but his attendance is never assured, leaving film publicists to cross their fingers and hope he shows.

But he hit Cannes in high style, first appearing for the Wednesday photo call in the aforementioned jacket, with checkered pants. At the fancier, black-tie premiere, he wore a mangled purple and orange bow tie, reportedly tied by his driver en route to the event.

Usually, he was dancing. He sashayed down the red carpet, took pictures of the photographers and blew kisses to onlookers, charming the crowds at Cannes' famed Croisette promenade. Murray has now stared in Anderson's "Rushmore," ''The Royal Tenenbaums," ''The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou" and "Fantastic Mr. Fox."

"Sometimes, when you work with a director you know, you not only may never see him again, sometimes you hope you never seen him again — and that goes for the director as well," said Murray. "They can't wait for you to leave. They drive you to the airport to make sure you leave. That happens.

"With Wes, I've never gotten a ride to the airport."

"Moonrise Kingdom" is about two 12-year-olds (newcomers Jared Gilman and Kara Hayward) in love and running away together on a New England island in 1965. Murray, along with Bruce Willis, Edward Norton and Tilda Swinton make up the more cynical adults in pursuit.

"I really don't get any other work but through Wes," joked Murray. "The making of these films has become more of a fun adventure all the time. I'm just delighted. I've known Wes a pretty long time and he just gets better."

Cannes runs until May 27 and has days of glamorous premieres to go, but the plaid-wearing Murray may have already made the festival's signature fashion statement.