Spike Lee is a Jury President of 73rd Cannes Film Festival

The first African-American to serve as jury president for the storied festival

Academy Award-winning director Spike Lee has been named jury president for the 2020 edition of Cannes Film Festival. The announcement was made by the festival on Tuesday morning in Paris.


“I’m honored to be the first person of the African diaspora (USA) to be named President of the Cannes Jury and of the main film festival”, said Lee in his lengthy statement.


He also added: "To me, the Cannes Film Festival (besides being the most important film festival in the world — no disrespect to anybody) has had a great impact on my film career. You could easily say Cannes changed the trajectory of who I became in world cinema.”


Lee's connection with festival goes way back to his first feature She's Gotta Have It, which won the Prix de la Jeunesse in the Director's Fortnight in 1986. In 1989 Do The Right Thing was selected to compete for the Palme d'Or and Jungle Fever played in competition in 1991. Girl 6 screened out of competition in 1996, and Summer of Sam was part of the Directors Fortnight sidebar in 1999. In 2002, Ten Minutes Older was in the Un Certain Regard selection. After a long gap, Lee returned to the Croisette with 2018's BlacKkKlansman, which competed for the Palme d'Or and ended up winning the festival's Grand Prix.


73rd edition of Cannes Film Festival will be taking place from 12-23, May 2020.

Ian Gavan / Staff