Spike Lee makes history as Cannes Film Festival 2020 jury president originally appeared on goodmorningamerica.com
Spike Lee has landed a history-making role.
On Tuesday, the Cannes Film Festival announced that the writer-director has been tapped to serve as the 2020 edition's jury president.
"Welcome to Spike Lee as President of the Jury of the 73rd Festival de Cannes!," the announcement on Twitter read. "Cannes is a natural homeland for those who (re)awaken minds. Lee's flamboyant personality is sure to shake things up. What kind of President will he be? Find out in Cannes!"
Welcome to Spike Lee as President of the Jury of the 73rd Festival de Cannes! Cannes is a natural homeland for those who (re)awaken minds. Lee's flamboyant personality is sure to shake things up. What kind of President will he be? Find out in Cannes! https://t.co/Rezlrl1sOB pic.twitter.com/bt28zF4QO0— Festival de Cannes (@Festival_Cannes) January 14, 2020
With his new role, Lee becomes the first African American to serve as jury president.
In a statement, Lee said he was "shocked, happy, surprised and proud" to learn of the opportunity, explaining that the festival had an "impact on his film career."
Lee has had seven of his films premiere at Cannes, including "Jungle Fever," "Girl 6," "Summer of Sam," "Ten Minutes Older" and 2018's "BlacKkKlansman," which won him the festival's Grand Prix.
The writer and director noted that that Cannes served as a "launching pad" for that Oscar-nominated film, which won him the Academy Award for best adapted screenplay last year. He also commented on the history he was making with the new gig.
"I'm honored to be the first person of the African diaspora (USA) to be named President of the Cannes Jury and of a main film festival," he added.
The official selections for Cannes 2020 and the rest of the jury will be announced in April.