MADRID – Fernando Bovaira (“The Others,” “Agora,” “Biutiful”), producer of some of the most ambitious and successful films made out of Spain in its modern era, will head up a San Sebastian main competition jury, which also includes as an honorary member Ukrainian director Oleg Sentsov, now languishing in a Moscow jail for his participation in Kiev’s human rights Euromaidan protests and opposition to Russia’s annexation of the Crimea.
“To defend freedom of expression and at the request of the European Film Academy (EFA), the San Sebastian Festival, following in the footsteps of festivals such as Motovun and Venice, has decided to name Oleg Sentsov as an honorary member of this year’s official jury,” the Spanish festival said in a statement Thursday.
Bovaira is likely to bring catholic tastes to jury deliberations: Recent productions at Madrid-based Mod Producciones, the indie shingle he set up after ankling from Spanish conglom Prisa, include Alejandro Amenabar’s upcoming thriller “Regression,” with Ethan Hawke and Emma Watson, family-audience targeting “Zip & Zap and the Marble Gang,” which played Toronto, San Sebastian and Sundance, and genre auteur title “Cannibal,” a San Sebastian competish entry last year.
Further jury members are Nastassja Kinski (“Paris Texas,” “Saviour”), director-producer Eric Khoo (“My Magic,” “Tatsumi”), a driving force in Singapore’s industry, and Venezuelan helmer Mariana Rondon, winner of last year’s San Sebastian Golden Seashell with “Bad Hair.”
French writer-director Marjane Satrapi, who burst onto the international filmmaking scene with “Persepolis,” and whose latest movie, Sundance player “The Voices,” starred Ryan Reynolds; German cinematographer Reinhold Vorschneider (“The Robber”), and Romanian actor Vlad Ivanov, who scored a L.A. Critics Award for his performance as the abortionist Dr. Bebe in Cristian Mungiu’s Cannes Palme d’Or winning “4 Months, 3 Weeks & 2 Days.”
This year’s 62nd San Sebastian Festival runs Sept. 19-27.