Will Smith And Pedro Almodovar Clash Over Netflix At The 2017 Cannes Film Festival

Two Netflix films are competing for the Palme d'Or for the first time

Will Smith and Pedro Almodovar have reignited the row over Netflix at the 2017 Cannes Film Festival.

For the first time in the festival's history, two Netflix films have been nominated for the prestigious Palme d'Or this year.

But the festival has since rescinded the rule and as of next year, films will have to be released in French cinemas if they want to be considered.

Jury president Pedro Almodovar has backed the change, and passionately defended the irreplaceable cinematic experience at the festival's opening press conference.

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"All this doesn't mean I'm not open, or don't celebrate the new technology and the possibilities they offer to us," the Volver director said (via the BBC).

"But while I'm alive, I will be fighting for the one thing the new generation is not aware of - the capacity of hypnosis of a large screen for a viewer."

He added that he couldn't conceive of the top prize "being given to a film and then not being able to see the film on a big screen".

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His speech prompted a round of applause from the audience.

However, actor Smith - who was making his debut as a jury member - shared his enthusiasm and support or streaming giant Netflix.

"There's very little cross over between going to the cinema and watching what they watch on Netflix," the star said.

He suggested they were "two different forms of entertainment" and that Netflix "brings a great amount of connectivity".

Speaking about his two children, he added: "In my home, Netflix has been nothing but an absolute benefit. [They] watch films they otherwise wouldn't have seen. It has broadened my children's global cinematic comprehension."

The two Netflix titles are Noah Baumbach's The Meyerowitz Stories and Bong Joon-ho's Okj.