Julia Roberts is taking her very first Cannes Film Festival in stride — and she's got no time for her footwear to slow her down. The actress arrived at the premiere of her film, Money Monster, in an off-the-shoulder Armani Privé gown and a pair of stunning, very tall heels. But once it was time to climb the stairs, Roberts — a pragmatist and woman after our own hearts — kicked off the platform shoes, lifted up the hem of her gown, and made her way up, barefoot. (According to USA Today, though, the stilettos were back on her feet once she reached the top and it was time to enter the building.) This small act of red carpet rebellion is particularly noteworthy mostly because of all the conversation surrounding this particular event: After a group of women were reportedly turned away at the door for wearing flats at last year's ceremonies, petitions were started, and stars like Rashida Jones and Emily Blunt spoke out about the alleged "heels only" dress code for women at Cannes. Those rumors were quickly dismissed by Thierry Frémaux, the festival's director.
Still, many female attendees stick to footwear with a little more boost for the glitzy affair. However, more and more are likely to steer away from the unspoken norm. Take, for instance, Susan Sarandon, who stepped on the red carpet in a sleek Saint Laurent suit and Jimmy Choo d'Orsay flats, per People, the day before Roberts went barefoot. (And if you have any questions about Sarandon's stance on the whole heels debacle, you can check out her Twitter.) But Roberts isn't the only — or even the first — actress to go barefoot at Cannes this year. After posing for requisite pictures at the Café Society photocall on Wednesday, Kristen Stewart took off her printed Louboutins and walked around the venue sans chaussures.
Tara Swennen, Stewart's longtime stylist, wasn't at all phased by this: "At this point I know I'm always going to get sent a photo of her carrying her shoes, so I should start compiling them and making a joke out of it because it's kind of great," she told The Telegraph, adding that the actress values comfort, which is why you'll find her wearing Chanel with sneakers, as only she can (and as she would go on to do later that day). According to Vanity Fair, Stewart addressed the footwear double standard when it comes to these types of events, at a press conference later on, arguing that if men don't have to wear heels, women shouldn't either.