Cate Blanchett to head Cannes festival jury

Oscar-winning actress Cate Blanchett, who this week helped in launching a project to fight sexual harassment in the film industry and other workplaces, will become the 12th woman to head the jury at Cannes film festival which starts on 8 May this year. The Australian actress, who has won accolades for her performances in Blue Jasmine, The Aviator and I’m Not There, said she is humbled by the privilege and responsibility of presiding over this year’s jury. Cannes plays a pivotal role in bringing the world together to celebrate story that all peoples share, understand and crave. Blanchett said she had been to Cannes in many guises “but never solely for the sheer pleasure of watching the cornucopia of films this great festival harbors”. Welcoming Blanchett, Cannes president Pierre Lescure and delegate general Thierry Fremaux, in a joint statement, described her as a “rare and unique artist with talent and conviction”. Last year, Pedro Almodovar led the jury which gave the Palme d’Or to Ruben Ostlund’s Swedish tragicomedy The Square.