The Cannes Film Festival rolls out its famous red carpet on Wednesday May 13th for a week and a half of glamorous entertainment with an equally glamorous backdrop.
But diver Laurent Lombard is quickly convincing anyone who will listen that it's not all as picture-perfect as it may seem in the south of France.
The Frenchman, who regularly takes his underwater camera below the surface to share scenes of pollution on the seabed, has gone viral with a clip in Cannes.
The video was uploaded to Facebook last month and has already been seen by 3 million people. It begins with a view of the picturesque Cannes shoreline, as seen from the water, together with the caption:
"Just a few hundred metres from the most beautiful Cannes palace. Everything is good, the sea is clean..."
But then he takes the camera underwater and shows a seemingly endless stretch of rubbish strewn across the seabed.
A quelques centaines de mètres des plus beaux palaces Cannois...tout va bien, la mer est propre..!Posted by Laurent Lombard on Monday, 13 April 2015
"I wanted to show people the consequences of what they do on land," he told French channel BFM TV. "When you throw things on the street, like papers, cigarette butts, or bottles, it all ends up in the sea."
The video has been shared over 70,000 times on Facebook.
Marie Pourreyon, tasked with keeping Cannes' public spaces clean, told BFM TV that the video was not a fair representation of the cleanliness of the bay, nor the Mediterranean sea in general.
"There are a few spots that we know get quite dirty and we clean them every spring," she said, adding that the area in Lombard's film was cleaned just days after the clip was posted online.
The diver's footage, together with footage of the area after cleaning, will be used for educational purposes in schools in an effort to help prevent pollution.
The 68th edition of the Cannes Film Festival will run from May 13th-24th. Read more about the line-up here and the jury here.