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Ruben Östlund on Scorsese, Spielberg and Heading the Cannes Jury: ‘You Want All Members to Independently Fight for What They Believe In’

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Elsa Keslassy International Correspondent Swedish filmmaker Ruben Östlund, whose movies “The Square” and “Triangle of Sadness” have won two of the past five Palmes d’Or, will attend Cannes this year not as a competitor but as jury president.

Over a lively phone chat, Östlund (who lives on Majorca with his fashion-photographer wife, Sina Görtz, and their son) shares his wildest aspirations for the festival. What made you want to take on the role of jury president? When you look at the history of who has been the president of the Cannes Film Festival’s jury, you get humbled.

My biggest inspirations come from the directors connected to this festival. And the way Cannes is fighting for the intellectual European perspective of cinema is something that is important and unique in the world. I’m sure you’ll be great, but you’re not a star. Yes, I am! You’re not as famous as Kristen Stewart, who presided over the Berlinale jury and joked during the press conference that she doesn’t watch movies. I know Kristen Stewart, and she’s definitely not a stupid person.

So I wouldn’t criticize Berlin’s decision to put her as the head of the jury. There’s a reason why you use the red carpet and romantic ideas about success and stars to draw attention to the content of the films. What kind of jury president will you be? I’m going to be a very Swedish president.

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