By Marie-Louise Gumuchian
- Wes Anderson, Ken Loach, Todd Haynes and Wim Wenders are among the directors who will compete for the top prize at next month's Cannes Film Festival, where a spate of Hollywood stars will also premiere their latest works on the famed Croisette waterfront.
At a press conference on Thursday, festival director Thierry Fremaux announced the line-up for the 76th edition of major cinema showcase from May 16-27.
Nineteen films will vie for the festival's coveted Palme d'Or prize, of which six are directed by women.
"It's a competition that will mix young filmmakers competing for the first time with veterans whose names and works we know," Fremaux said.
Loach returns to the festival with "The Old Oak", about Syrian refugees arriving in a former mining village in Britain, while Anderson brings his star-studded "Asteroid City", in which major events disrupt a junior stargazer convention.
Other directors in competition include American filmmaker Haynes with "May December" starring Oscar winners Natalie Portman and Julianne Moore, Italian Nanni Moretti with “Il Sol Dell’Avvenire”, German filmmaker Wim Wenders with “Perfect Days” and Japan's Hirokazu Kore-eda with "Monster".
Women directors in competition include France's Catherine Breillat with "L’Ete Dernier", Austrian Jessica Hausner with “Club Zero” and Tunisian Kaouther Ben Hania with “Les Filles D’Olfa”.
Organisers have already announced the festival's opener - biographical drama "Jeanne du Barry" featuring Johnny Depp, the Hollywood star's first live-action film since his defamation trial against ex-wife Amber Heard last year.
Also out of competition is veteran Martin Scorsese's "Killers of the Flower Moon", about the murders of Osage Native Americans. Set in 1920s Oklahoma, the movie features past Scorsese collaborators Leonardo DiCaprio, Robert De Niro and Jesse Plemons.
Adventurer Indiana Jones will also return to the festival 15 years since his last appearance in Cannes. Harrison Ford reprises the title role in "Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny", which will have its world premiere in France.
Fremaux said there would also be a special tribute to Ford's career at the festival.
Swedish director Ruben Ostlund, whose film “Triangle of Sadness” won last year’s Palme d’Or, will preside over the jury at this year's competition.
(Reporting by Marie-Louise Gumuchian)