Cannes, Feb 27 (IANS) Oscar-winning director Alejandro G. Inarritu of “Birdman” and “The Revenant” fame has been named president of the Cannes Film Festival jury, becoming the first Mexican artiste to chair the panel.
The news comes just days after Alfonso Cuaron’s “Roma” created history by becoming the first Mexican movie to win the best foreign language film at the Oscars.
Inarritu has a long history with Cannes, starting with his debut feature, “Amores Perros” in 2000, and last attended two years ago with his critically acclaimed virtual reality experience, “Carne y Arena” in the official selection, reported variety.com.
“Cannes is a festival that has been important to me since the beginning of my career. I’m humbled and thrilled to return this year with the immense honour of presiding over the jury,” Inarritu said in a statement.
He added: “Cinema runs through the veins of the planet, and this festival has been its heart. We on the jury will have the privilege to witness the new and excellent work of fellow filmmakers from all over the planet. This is a true delight and a responsibility that we will assume with passion and devotion.”
Pierre Lescure, the festival’s president, and Thierry Fremaux, its artistic director, praised Inarritu as “not only a daring filmmaker and a director who is full of surprises (but) also a man of conviction, an artist of his time.” They noted that it was “very rare” for Inarritu to agree to participate on a jury.
The 72nd Cannes Film Festival will take place from May 14 to 25.