Iranian director Jafar Panahi, who was released from prison in his home country back in May stemming from allegations that he was making films against the regime, has been invited to join the International Jury of the 61st Berlin International Film Festival by Berlinale Director Dieter Kosslick.
"We hope Jafar Panahi will be able to attend the Festival and perform this important task on the International Jury of the 61st Berlinale," said Kosslick in a statement.
Earlier this year the Cannes Film Festival had invited Panahi to join their jury but he could not accept due to his imprisonment. A winner at Cannes for his directorial debut "The White Balloon" and "Crimson Gold," Pinahi has also been awarded by Berlinale with the Silver Bear for his 2006 film "Offside." His last short film, "The Accordion," had its premiere at this year's Venice Film Festival."