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Sofia Coppola Jeered at Cannes

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May 24, 2006 | 8:50am EDT

Moviemaker Sofia Coppola has defended her new period drama Marie Antoinette after it was booed during a press screening at the Cannes Film Festival last night.

Despite admitting the response was "disappointing," Coppola insisted the Kirsten Dunst-starring movie was always going to provoke heated debate. She said, "It's better to get a reaction, it's better than a mediocre response.

"Hopefully some people will enjoy it. I think it's not for everybody."

Coppola was defended at the festival by the film's stars Dunst, who also appeared in Coppola's The Virgin Suicides in 1999, and British actor Steve Coogan.

Dunst said, "I like the movie and I'm really proud."

Coogan added, "When you make something that's personal and specific it's inevitable that there will be some naysayers, and it's better to have that than just have a bland uniform response.

"I think it shows that Sofia is true to her voice. I've seen the film and it's consistent with all the qualities that make her films great in the past. People who like Sofia Coppola will love this film. People who don't won't but then they're not really under her radar anyway."

The biopic of the tragic French queen premieres in Cannes tonight.

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