The line-up sees many returning auteurs including new films from Gus Van Sant, Nanni Moretti and Jacques Audiard.
Films from Woody Allen and new Pixar animation Inside Out will play out of competition, alongside Asif Kapadia’s Amy Winehouse documentary.
The festival begins on 13 May with a jury chaired by Joel and Ethan Coen.
Festival director Thierry Fremaux announced the line-up in Paris on Thursday, simultaneously launching a campaign to stem the tide of “selfies” on the red carpet.
“We don’t want to prohibit it, but we want to slow down the process of selfies on the steps,” said Fremaux. “We think it’s ridiculous and grotesque and really slows things down.”
“You never look as ugly as you do in a selfie,” he added.
Thursday’s press conference follows earlier announcements regarding the opening film – La Tete Haute (Standing Tall), by French actress-director Emmanuelle Bercot – and the worldwide premiere of Fury Road, the latest chapter in the revived Mad Max franchise.
Seventeen films were unveiled in competition and 14 in Un Certain Regard, although Fremaux noted there would be more films added to the line-up in the coming days.
Blanchett will star alongside Rooney Mara in Carol, based on a novel by The Talented Mr Ripley author Patricia Highsmith. The 1950s new York-set drama is directed by Todd Haynes of Far From Heaven fame.
In Gus Van Sant’s The Sea of Trees, Matthew McConaughey and Ken Watanabe play two men who meet by chance in Japan’s Suicide Forest, where both have gone to end their lives; Naomi Watts also stars.
Michael Fassbender and Marion Cotillard will co-star in a new adaptation of Macbeth, from up-and-coming Australian director Justin Kurzel, while Italy’s Paolo Sorrentino follows up 2013’s The Great Beauty with the English-language drama Youth starring Sir Michael Caine as a retired orchestra conductor who receives an invitation to perform for the Queen.
The line-up also includes two other Italian directors, Gomorrah’s Matteo Garrone – premiering his The Tale of Tales – and Cannes regular Nanni Moretti, with My Mother.
As tradition dictates, France is represented by four directors – including Audiard, Maiwenn, Valerie Donzelli and first-timer Stephane Brize.
Asia is represented by The Assassin, from Taiwan’s Hou Hsiao-hsien, China’s Jia Zhangke whose Mountains May Depart marks his fourth film at Cannes and Our Little Sister, from Japanese director Hirokazu Kore-eda.
Denis Villeneuve’s Sicario – a crime drama starring Emily Blunt and Benecio Del Toro – rounds out the trio of directors from the US, alongside Van Sant and Haynes.
Screening out of competition, Woody Allen’s 45th film, Irrational Man, sees Joaquin Phoenix star as a college professor who starts a relationship with one of his students (Emma Stone).
There are no films from British directors in the competition line-up, though there is considerable anticipation for London-born Asif Kapadia’s Amy screening in the Midnight section.
Last year’s Palme d’Or was won by Winter Sleep, from Turkish filmmaker Nuri Bilge Ceylan.