Benicio del Toro to head up Cannes Film Festival jury

April 5, 2018 GMT

Benicio del Toro is to preside over the jury of Un Certain Regard at the Cannes Film Festival.

The 51-year-old actor - who previously served on the festival’s competition jury in 2010 - has succeeded Uma Thurman in presiding over the jury, which awards the coveted accolades.

del Toro already has a strong association with the event, having won the Best Actor gong in Cannes for his performance as Che Guevara in Steven Soderbergh’s ‘Che’.

Un Certain Regard will this year feature around 20 different films at the upcoming festival, which begins on May 8.

In 2017, del Toro starred as Dj, an underworld codebreaker, in the Rian Johnson-directed ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’.

And the veteran star admitted that being offered the part represented the realisation of a long-held ambition.

He shared: “The director called me and offered me the role. I saw it as a challenge.

“I was being offered ‘Star Wars’, something he could have offered to hundreds of actors.

“We agreed I would read the script and give him an answer, so the script arrived, someone gave it to me in-hand and waited outside until I had finished reading it, and I am a slow reader.”

del Toro had to wait to discover whether he’d secured the part and he admitted to having no hesitations in accepting the role.

The actor confessed: “He waited outside four or five hours. I liked everything, not only my character, so I immediately said yes.”