Gosling, 32, wrote a letter to Cannes director Thierry Fremaux apologizing for his absence. The Canadian actor was directing a movie of his own in Detroit, he wrote. It will be Gosling's directorial debut. Fremaux said he was sad Gosling couldn't make it.
It might have been better this way, though, as the film was booed, presumably for its violent content and tragic plot, the Globe and Mail reported.
"Only God Forgives" stars Gosling as a boxing club owner in Bangkok, whose mother pushes him to avenge his brother's murder. It was directed by Nicolas Winding Refn, who said he understood why Gosling had to miss the premiere.
“I would never even do it if I was in his situation,” Refn said. “When you’re directing, it’s another arena."