Lily-Rose Depp & Abel Tesfayes The Idol premiered in Cannes to disgusted critics

I’ve been trying to ignore this, but here we go. I’m going to give this as much effort as Sam Levinson. Levinson, Abel Tesfaye and Lily-Rose Depp are in Cannes this week to promote their new HBO show, The Idol. It was originally a show about a pop star (played by Lily-Rose) who fell under the spell of a charismatic cult-like dude, played by Abel, and how the pop star extracted herself from the situation. Then the female showrunner was fired, Sam Levinson was brought in and the whole show was rewritten as an exploitation of women, Lily-Rose’s character in particular. People aren’t buying any of it and the Cannes critics are pretty disgusted. I’m including pics from the photocall and premiere. Lily-Rose is really trying to play up the pouty, disgusted ingénue.

Lily-Rose Depp is looking at The Idol through a creative lens that differs from recent HBO critics. As musician Abel “The Weeknd” Tesfaye and Euphoria creator Sam Levinson’s latest project receives reviews of ultra-lust (like The Wrap’s declaration the series is “luxury sleaze”), Depp, 23, deep dives into her character — the wannabe popstar, Jocelyn.

“I think that something about Jocelyn is just that she’s a born and bred performer,” she said at a Cannes Film Festival press conference for the series. “I think that extends to every aspect of her life, not just her professional life. I think that the way that she dresses, for example, is her trying to tell you something all the time or say something to the people that she’s around or express herself in some kind of way.”

Depp continued, “And I also think that the occasional bareness of the character physically mirrors the bareness that we get to see emotionally in her.”

For director Levinson, Jocelyn is a reflection of American culture — particularly the influence of p–nography on the “psyche of young people.”

“It’s funny, I think that sometimes things that might be revolutionary are taken too far,” Levinson also told reporters at the press conference. “I think we live in a very sexualized world.”

Levinson continued, “We see this in pop music and how it reflects the underbelly of the internet in some ways. I think that with this show and working with Lily, we had a lot of discussions about who she is as a person, who Jocelyn is as a person, and what she’s feeling, what she’s angling, who she’s playing to.”

[From People]

Maybe I’m too old for this show and these conversations, but whenever I see a very young-looking woman being exploited by the men around her, I don’t see some brave exploration of sexuality or some kind of highbrow commentary on today’s world. I just see… exploitation and objectification. There’s nothing about this which is sexy or titillating or even “important” or worthy of conversation. It’s just some poorly written, poorly executed, sexist garbage.

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red, Cover Images.

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