Cannes jury a mix of glitz and genius

Cannes (France) (AFP) –


The world's most glamorous film festival opens in the French Riviera resort of Cannes on Wednesday.

Here is the jury of celebrities who will decide who wins its top prize, the Palme d'Or, on May 22:

George Miller

The 71-year-old Australian president of the jury trained as a doctor before creating the Outback post-apocalyptic world of "Mad Max", partly inspired by his days working in a hospital emergency room.

Arnaud Desplechin

The 55-year-old French maker of the 2008 heart-warmer "A Christmas Tale" had another hit last year with "My Golden Days" and is a connoisseur of family dramas.

Kirsten Dunst

Still only 34, the former child actor has had built a glittering career matching art-house hits like "Interview with the Vampire" and "The Virgin Suicides" with blockbusters such as the "Spider-Man" films.

Valeria Golino

The Italian actor-director, 50, is best known for her part in "Rain Man" alongside Dustin Hoffman and Tom Cruise. Her first feature, "Honey", was shown at Cannes in 2013.

Mads Mikkelsen

Denmark's best known export after bacon and beer made his name as a sensitive cop in the "Pusher" film trilogy before playing a memorable line of baddies including Le Chiffre in the Bond film "Casino Royale" and Dr Hannibal Lecter in the television version of the cultured cannibal story.

Mikkelson, 50, also stars in the new Star Wars film, "Rogue One". His inclusion on the jury was somewhat controversial, as he is a close friend of fellow Dane Nicolas Winding Refn, who is in the running for the Palme d'Or.

Laszlo Nemes

The Hungarian director's debut feature, "Son of Saul", picked up the fest foreign language picture award at both the Oscars and the Golden Globes this year as well as the Grand Prix at Cannes in 2015.

It was described by Claude Lanzmann as one of the best films he had seen on the Holocaust, no mean praise from the French maker of epic documentary "Shoah".

Vanessa Paradis

The French singer and actress, 43, began as a model before becoming a huge film and singing star in France and having two children with Hollywood star Johnny Depp.

Katayoon Shahabi

The Iranian producer, who was born in 1968, is a major player in her homeland.

She has made a series of documentaries, including one about the impact the Oscar Asghar Farhadi won in 2012 for the acclaimed "A Separation" had on the Islamic Republic. Farhadi is again in the running for the Palme d'Or this year with "The Salesman".

Donald Sutherland

The veteran Canadian actor -- now the head of a thespian dynasty that includes his son Kiefer Sutherland and granddaughter Sarah -- made his name with the war films "The Dirty Dozen" and "M*A*S*H" before starring in the Oscar-winning thriller "Klute" alongside Jane Fonda.

With a career spanning five decades, the 80-year-old made a big screen comeback in "The Hunger Games" franchise.