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Angelopoulos heads The Montréal World Film Festival

The jury lineup for 29th edition of the Montréal World Film Festival, which takes place from August 26 to September 5, is one of the most prestigious in the Festival’s history. It is chaired by Greek director Theo Angelopoulos, and includes Russian director Pavel Lounguine, Chilean director Silvio Caiozzi, Spanish writer Vicente Molina Foix, the well-known Swedish cameraman Jörgen Persson, and the founder of the Giffoni Film Festival in Italy, now Vice President of the Italian National Film Centre, Claudio Gubitosi.

Short biographies of jury members (in alphabetical order):

Greece's greatest director and one of the premier film artists of our era, Theo Angelopoulos trained as a lawyer at the University of Athens but soon found himself drawn to the arts and began publishing essays, short stories and poetry. After attending film school in Paris, he worked briefly as a film critic in Greece, and made his auspicious debut as a feature director with RECONSTRUCTION (1970), winning several prizes at Greek and international festivals. His subsequent films have confirmed his place in the pantheon of contemporary masters, among them: DAYS OF ' 36 (1972), THE TRAVELLING PLAYERS (1975), VOYAGE TO CYTHERA (1984), THE BEE KEEPER (1986), LANDSCAPE IN THE MIST (1988), ULYSSES' GAZE (1995), ETERNITY AND A DAY (1998) and THE WEEPING MEADOW (2004).

Johanne Bellefleur, who represents the public after winning the Be a jury member contest launched by Montreal World Film Festival, works in the administration of McGill University. A Montreal cinephile who has attended the MWFF faithfully over the past 22 years, Ms. Bellefleur believes that the cinema represents a means to travel the world, to put oneself in other people's shoes, and to learn how emotions are expressed across the continents. The cinema, she feels, is an essential element of national and international culture, and film festivals are a key means of propagating it. Among her favourite films: Chen Kaige's FAREWELL, MY CONCUBINE, Giuseppe Tornatore's CINEMA PARADISO, Quentin Tarantino's PULP FICTION, Luchino Visconti's THE DAMNED and Francis Ford Coppola's THE GODFATHER.

Award-winning Chilean director Silvio Caiozzi began his career as cinematographer on a dozen features including Raul Ruíz’s WHITE DOVE (1973) and Costa-Gavras’ STATE OF SIEGE (1973). He has produced and directed films, television programs and over 300 commercials. His features include A LA SOMBRA DEL SOL (co-directed, 1974), JULIO COMIENZA EN JULIO (1979, voted best Chilean fim of the 20th century), LA LUNA EN EL ESPEJO (1990), FERNANDO HA VUELTO (1998) and CORONATION, which won Best Director at the 2000 Montreal World Film Festival. He has served as president of the Chilean Film and Television Producers' Association and is currently president of the Chilean Audiovisual Media Association.

A rising star of the French cinema, Amira Casar grew up in Ireland and the U.K. and began her professional career as a fashion model before studying drama at Cours Florent and the Conservatoire national supérieur d’art dramatique. She acted on the stage in London (Wallace Shawn's Aunt Dan and Lemon) and Paris (Ibsen's Hedda Gabler) and made her screen debut in Radovan Tadic's ERREUR DE JEUNESSE (1989). She was nominated for a César as most promising actress for her role in LA VÉRITÉ SI JE MENS! (1997). Among her other films: HOW I KILLED MY FATHER (2001), HYPNOTIZED AND HYSTERICAL (2002, shown at the Montreal World Film Festival), THE VERRY MERRY WIDOWS (2003), RIEN, VOILÀ L’ORDRE (2004) and ANATOMY OF HELL (2004).

Claudio Gubitosi founded the Giffoni International Festival of Cinema for Young People 35 years ago and continues to serve as its artistic director. Under his leadership, the Giffoni Festival has become one of the leading international events of its kind. From 1989 to 1991, Gubitosi worked on cultural and community projects for the San Carlo Theatre in Naples. He served as artistic director of Umbriafiction TV, the international festival of TV fiction, and later organized Italiafiction TV in Salerno for young viewers. He collaborated with RAI (the Italian state network), RTSI (Swiss state television for the Italian canton) and the RAISAT, the satellite cultural network. In October 2004 he was nominated member of the Italian National Committee for Cinema.

After beginning her career as a fashion model, Danish-born Anna Karina quickly became a favourite actress of the French New Wave, in particular the early films of Jean-Luc Godard (A WOMAN IS A WOMAN, MY LIFE TO LIVE, BAND OF OUTSIDERS, ALPHAVILLE, PIERROT LE FOU, MADE IN U.S.A.). She became his feminine muse and his wife. She confirmed her charm and talent in films by many top directors of international cinema, including Luchino Visconti (THE STRANGER), André Delvaux (APPOINTMENT IN BRAY) and Rainer Werner Fassbinder (CHINESE ROULETTE). She has often returned to work in Danish television and cinema, and she made her directorial debut in 1973 with LIVING TOGETHER. Ms. Karina has also had a parallel career as a singer and song writer.

Moscow-born Pavel Lounguine came to immediate international attention when his directorial debut film, TAXI BLUES, won the best director prize at the 1990 Cannes Festival. He studied mathematics and linguistics at Moscow University before enrolling in scriptwriting and direction at VGIK, the famous Moscow film academy, and beginning his film career as a screenwriter. After authoring a dozen scripts between 1974 and 1989, he turned to directing. He followed the rousing critical and commercial success of TAXI BLUES with LUNA PARK (1992), À PROPOS DE NICE, LA SUITE (1995), LINE OF LIFE (1996), THE WEDDING (2000), TYCOON (2002) and ROOTS (2005), showing at this year's Montreal World Film Festival.

Born in Elche (Alicante), Spanish writer and filmmaker Vicente Molina Foix studied law, letters and philosophy at the University of Madrid before launching his career as a critic, essayist and, in particular, novelist. A prolific writer, he is generally ranked in the generation of authors whose existential references are to the cinema and to literature itself, and whose work stands in opposition to traditional literary forms. Among his novels are Museo provincial de los horrores (1970), Busto (1973), La comunión de los atletas (1979), Los padres viudos (1983), La quincena soviética (1988), La edad de oro (1993), La misa de Baroja (1995) and La mujer sin cabeza (1997). After several film scripts, he made his directorial debut in 2001 with SAGITARIO.

One of the great directors of photography on the Swedish cinema, Jörgen Persson studied at the Swedish Film Institute in the 1960s before launching his professional career in commercials. It was his luminous camerawork for Bo Widerberg's ELVIRA MADIGAN (1966), ADALEN 31 (1968) and JOE HILL (1970) that brought him to international attention. Named European cinematographer of the year in 1989 for his work in THE WOMEN ON THE ROOF (Carl-Gustav Nykvist), he was responsible for the splendid photography of some of the best-known Swedish films of the past three decades, including MY LIFE AS A DOG (Lasse Hallström, 1985), PELLE THE CONQUEROR (Bille August, 1987), THE BEST INTENTIONS (Bille August, 1992), SOFIE (Liv Ullmann, 1992), SMILLA’S SENSE OF SNOW (Bille August, 1997) and FAITHLESS (Liv Ullmann, 2000).


Chinese director Chen Kaige will be on hand when the MWFF pays tribute to him. Chen Kaige is one of the world's most honoured filmmakers. His awards include the Palme d'Or at Cannes in 1993 and the British Film Academy's Best Foreign Film Award in 1994 for FAREWELL MY CONCUBINE, the Jury Award at the MWFF in 1987 for THE BIG PARADE, and the San Sebastian Festival's Silver Seashell trophy in 2002 for TOGETHER.

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