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Italian Nanni Moretti to head Cannes jury

Director Nanni Moretti arrives on the red carpet for the screening of the film Habemus Papam in competition at the 64th Cannes Film Festival
Director Nanni Moretti arrives on the red carpet for the screening of the film Habemus Papam in competition at the 64th Cannes Film Festival

PARIS (Reuters) - Acclaimed Italian actor and director Nanni Moretti will head the jury at the 2012 Cannes film festival in May, organizers said on Friday.

The 58-year-old has had a long association with the world's most important cinema showcase, appearing in competition in 1978 with "Ecce Bombo."

He was back in 1994 with "Caro Diario" (Dear Diary), for which he won the best director award, and in 2001 with "La Stanza del figlio" (The Son's Room), which won the coveted Palme d'Or for best picture.

Five years later came "Il Caimano" (The Caiman), a film that criticized aspects of Italian political life in the era of Silvio Berlusconi.

"This is a real joy, an honor and a tremendous responsibility to preside over the jury of the most prestigious festival of cinematography in the world," said Moretti, who served on the Cannes jury in 1997.

"As a spectator, fortunately I still have the same curiosity that I had in my youth and so it is a great privilege for me to embark on this voyage into the world of contemporary international film," he added in a statement.

The 2012 festival runs from May 16-27.

(Reporting by Mike Collett-White, editing by Paul Casciato)

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