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Barbie director Greta Gerwig to chair Cannes film festival jury

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Director Greta Gerwig has been named president of the jury for next year’s Cannes Film Festival, following the huge success of her film Barbie.

Barbie director Greta Gerwig to chair Cannes film festival jury
Barbie director Greta Gerwig to chair Cannes film festival jury

Gerwig was described by organisers of the French event as “a heroine of our modern times” who “shakes up the status quo” in the cinema world.

Barbie is the most successful film of the year at the box office and a major awards contender.

Gerwig will be the first female US director to chair the Cannes jury.

She said Cannes had “always been the pinnacle of what the universal language of movies can be”.

She added: “I am stunned and thrilled and humbled to be serving as the president of the Cannes Film Festival Jury. I cannot wait to see what journeys are in store for all of us.”

Festival bosses Iris Knobloch and Thierry Frémaux said in a joint statement: “This is an obvious choice, since Greta Gerwig so audaciously embodies the renewal of world cinema, for which Cannes is each year both the forerunner and the sounding board.”

Gerwig will lead the panel of film-makers who pick the winners of the top prizes at the prestigious annual festival, which is the launchpad for many acclaimed films from around the world.

This week, Barbie has been named the frontrunner for the Golden Globe and Critics’ Choice awards, and is set to be a leading contender at next year’s Oscars.

Gerwig also earned acclaim for 2017’s Lady Bird and 2019’s adaptation of Little Women.

Previous Cannes jury presidents have included fellow directors Spike Lee, Alejandro González Iñárritu and Pedro Almodóvar, and actress Cate Blanchett.

The next festival will take place in May.

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