Berlinale 2016 opens February 11 with Meryl Streep as jury president

Meryl Streep is jury president at this year’s Berlin International Film Festival, held February 11-21. — AFP-Relaxnews pic
Meryl Streep is jury president at this year’s Berlin International Film Festival, held February 11-21. — AFP-Relaxnews pic

BERLIN, Feb 9 — The 66th Berlin International Film Festival opens Thursday, February 11 with the Coen brothers’ latest movie Hail, Caesar! and an international jury headed by American actress Meryl Streep.

As the first major film festival of the year, the Berlinale will be the talk of the movie world before the spotlight switches to the Oscars ceremony at the end of the month.

Jury president Meryl Streep will be joined by British actor Clive Owen, German actor Lars Eidinger, British film critic Nick James, French photographer Brigitte Lacombe, Italian actress Alba Rohrwacher and Polish filmmaker Malgorzata Szumowska on the international panel picking this year’s Golden Bear winners among the movies selected for 2016.

Red carpet stars

This year’s movies picked for the main competition include Vincent Perez’s war drama Alone in Berlin, which will bring Emma Thompson and 2015 jury member Daniel Brühl to the red carpet. Colin Firth, Jude Law and Nicole Kidman will be in Berlin presenting Genius, directed by Michael Grandage, while Michael Shannon, Joel Edgerton and Kirsten Dunst star in Midnight Special, directed by Jeff Nichols.

The cast of Hail, Caesar! — Josh Brolin, George Clooney, Ralph Fiennes and Jonah Hill — will be first to walk the red carpet with the movie’s directors Joel and Ethan Coen. Alongside the competition, Michael Moore will be in Berlin for the European première of his upcoming documentary Where to Invade Next, Don Cheadle will be previewing his Miles Davies biopic Miles Ahead, and Japanese director Kiyoshi Kurosawa will be showcasing Creepy.

Homages and high-end TV series

The Festival will also be paying tribute to three stars of the big screen who have passed away since the start of the year. David Bowie will be honoured with a screening of The Man Who Fell to Earth, Alan Rickman will be seen in Sense and Sensibility and Italian director Ettore Scola’s movie Le Bal will be showing as part of the festival.

In a recent addition the Berlinale programme, a selection of upcoming TV series will be screened at the event. For 2016, the second season of American drama Better Call Saul will be premiered at the festival, alongside two British miniseries — The Night Manager, starring Hugh Laurie and Tom Hiddleston, and Love, Nina, starring Helena Bonham-Carter.

Last year’s jury, presided by Darren Aronofsky, crowned Iranian filmmaker Jafar Panahi's Taxi with a Golden Bear, as well as actors Charlotte Rampling and Tom Courteney for their roles in 45 years. — AFP-Relaxnews