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Forest Whitaker awarded the Honorary Palme d'or at the 75th Cannes Film Festival
Forest Whitaker © WPDI

Academy Award Winning Actor Forest Whitaker will be the honorary guest at the opening ceremony of the 75th Cannes Film Festival. He will also receive the honorary Palme d’or, which pays tribute to a sparkling artistic journey, a rare personality as well as a discreet but strong humanitarian commitment to key topical issues.

Forest Whitaker came to the Festival de Cannes in 1988 and appeared on the silver screen as the genius Charlie Parker, the visionary jazzman who took the saxophone to a higher, unprecedented dimension. He starred alongside Clint Eastwood in Bird, his first lead role, and at the age of 27, he was awarded the Prize for Best Actor at the Festival de Cannes for his Bird performance.

He returned six times in the Official Selection and four times in the Competition, with Bird and then Bill Duke’s A Rage in Harlem, Abel Ferrara’s Body Snatchers, and Jim Jarmusch’s Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai.

As part of the tribute, For the Sake of Peace, directed by Christophe Castagne and Thomas Sametin and produced by Forest Whitaker, will be screened in Special Screening Wednesday, May 18.

For the Sake of Peace

South Sudan is the youngest country in the world, at war with itself, with over 350,000 people killed since its inception in 2011. However, through this darkness, its endless cycle of conflict has hope: the determination of young women and men who refuse to give up on peace. Gatjang, a referee in a refugee camp of Juba, uses sports to bring a culture of peace to children and youths from adverse tribes. And Nandege, a young mother, becomes a successful mediator against all odds to address a lethal conflict that has opposed communities of the Kidepo Valley for generations. Through their stories, we gain awareness of the paths open to our humanity, which resonates across backgrounds and borders.

The 75th Cannes Film Festival will take place from May 17 to 28, 2022.

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