The girls enter a cancan competition, but the intense practice schedule and concerns about costumes creates a problem: cliques. The girls break into groups and exclude and taunt each other until Madeline, with the help of two legendary cancan stars, has the job of helping the girls make amends in time for their final competition.
When Madeline's sinuses act up, Dr. Cohn suggests she go someplace warm, so Lord Cucuface sends the girls to Cannes. Not heeding Miss Clavel's warning, Madeline stays on the beach all day, and gets sunburned, so she's forced to stay inside. She is so lonely and bored, Lord Cucuface asks his director friends to bring their latest movies - and, on Madeline's suggestion, a contest - The Cannes Film Festival is born.
Madeline and the girls play matchmaker and are invited to be in the resulting wedding. However, Madeline's feelings are hurt when Pepito starts ignoring her, not knowing that he's being ruthlessly teased by his cousin Pablito for "liking a girl". When she learns the truth, she convinces them it's okay for them to be just friends.
Nicole is embarrassed when she is asked to read a letter from her aunt, and it is revealed that her reading skills aren't as developed as the other girls. It turns out that her aunt has sent tickets to her and the girls to go to Africa. With Lord Cucuface tagging along, Miss Clavel and the girls join Nicole's aunt for a safari. There, they meet a friendly little gorilla named Rosie, and thru her, Nicole learns that she shouldn't be ashamed of being a late bloomer.
The girls are planning a spring tea in honor of Lord Cucuface and the trustees when Sugar Dimples, the child movie star, drops in to visit and takes over, turning their simple party into a major "Hollywood" production, with over-the-top results. It is up to Madeline to bring the party down to earth and remind Sugar Dimples that it is the company that counts, not the lavishness.