Robert De Niro will serve as the jury president of the 64th Cannes Film Festival, it was announced today. An eight time visitor to the festival, De Niro has been featured in two Palme d’Or winners: “Taxi Driver,” in 1976, and ten years later, “The Mission,” directed by Roland Joffe. Cannes’ organizers said that by inviting De Niro to serve in the position, they wanted “to pay also tribute to the co-founder of the Tribeca Film Festival which celebrates its 10th anniversary in 2011.”
“As co-founder of the Tribeca Film Festival and the Doha Tribeca Film Festival I have an increased appreciation for the jury, who serve, undertaking an important role in choosing films that are represented in the world of film at its highest level, and these types of festivals help connect the international film community and have a lasting cultural impact,” De Niro said in a statement. “Having served as President of the Jury in the eighties twice, I know this isn’t an easy task for me or my fellow jury members, but I’m very honored and happy to head the jury for this year’s Cannes Film Festival.”
De Niro marks the fifth American in the past ten years to head the jury after Tim Burton last year, Sean Penn in 2008, Quentin Tarantino in 2004, and David Lynch in 2002.
The 64th Cannes Film Festival fest runs May 11 – 22, 2011.