Steven Spielberg to Preside Over 2013 Cannes Film Festival Jury

Director Steven Spielberg arrives at the 85th Academy Awards nominees luncheon in Beverly Hills

Image: Mario Anzuoni / Reuters

Organizers of the Cannes Film Festival announced this week that Oscar-winning director Steven Spielberg would head this year’s festival jury in May. Spielberg will succeed Italian director/actor Nanni Moretti, who presided over the jury last year.

The Cannes Film Festival is a twelve-day festival that will take place from May 15 to May 26 this year. Hosted from the Cote d’Azur in the south of France, the Cannes Film Festival “is a major showplace for new movies from around the world that attracts top and emerging screen writers, deal-makers and hundreds of film critics,” according to Reuters.

Spielberg, 66, has presented several films at the festival, according to The Beverly Hills Courier. Though “most of the films [he] presented at Cannes were not in competition,” his 1974 film Sugarland Express did win best screenplay. In addition, in 1982, his film E.T. screened as a world premiere at the festival.

Festival President Gilles Jacob said he often called Spielberg, who is a “regular” at Cannes, to be Jury President but “he’s always been shooting a film.” So this year, Jacob added, “When I was told ‘E.T. phone home,’ I understood and immediately replied, ‘At last!’”

Spielberg has reportedly called the festival a “platform for extraordinary films to be discovered and introduced to the world.”

At last week’s Academy Awards ceremony in Los Angeles, Spielberg’s presidential drama Lincoln took home two Oscars. His four-decade career has resulted in numerous blockbuster films such as, Jaws, Schindler’s List, The Color Purple, and Jurassic Park. 

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