Rocker Pete Doherty plays decadent dandy in Cannes

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British rocker Pete Doherty, whose cocaine-snorting and carousing have landed him in jail, on Sunday appeared in his first film role in Cannes as a debauched young man in 19th-century France.

"Confession of a Child of the Century" sees Doherty star in an adaptation of French writer Alfred de Musset's autobiographical novel of the same name alongside Charlotte Gainsbourg.

The English rocker has been spotted wandering around Cannes over the past few days looking typically dishevelled ahead of the screening of the film directed by France's Sylvie Verheyde.

Doherty, the 33-year-old former singer of The Libertines and ex-boyfriend of British supermodel Kate Moss, has had recurring problems with drugs, alcohol and driving offences and has served time in prison.

"Confession of a Child of the Century" is in the running for a prize in the Cannes festival's new talent sidebar competition, Un Certain Regard, where the jury president is veteran British actor Tim Roth.

Verheyde and compatriot Catherine Corsini are the only two women directors among the 17 in the Un Certain Regard line-up.

There are no female film-makers among the 22 vying for the Palme d'Or top prize at Cannes, which has sparked accusations of sexism surrounding the festival organisers' choice of films.

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