Marrakech Honoring Bill Murray, Willem Dafoe

The 15th edition of the Moroccan Festival runs Dec. 4-12

Bill Murray and Willem Dafoe figure among the film personalities to be honored at the 15th Marrakech Intl. Film Festival, which runs Dec. 4-12.

Moroccan cinematographer Kamal Derkaoui (“The Tall Man”), Bollywood actress Madhuri Dixit and multi-laureled South-Korean genre helmer Park Chan-Wook will also receive tributes at the Moroccan fest.

One of the key events in Africa and the Arab world, the Marrakech Fest has a large ability to attract significant actors and directors in a context where they are willing to talk to some length and with easier access about their careers. This year is no exception.

The 2015 edition will also pay tribute to Atom Egoyan, who will preside a Canadian delegation at the festival.

Masterclasses with renowned Iranian director Abbas Kiarostami, Turkish-German auteur Fatih Akin and Park Chan-wook have also been announced.

“The personalities receiving tributes and delivering masterclasses at the 15th edition represent, between them, a beacon of hope for the future,” the Marrakech Intl. Film Festival said in a statement.

“The Festival thus remains true to its core mission, despite the challenging global context. A crossroads of cultures, and a place of meeting and dialogue, it continues to strive to foster cinema as an universal language, the humanity of art being the only way to counter extremism.”

As previously reported, Francis Ford Coppola will head the festival jury, following in the footsteps of Marrakech’s list of prestigious jury presidents – think Martin Scorsese in 2013 and Isabelle Huppert in 2014.

Stars and heavyweight directors who have attended the fest in past editions also include Martin Sheen, Roman Polanski, Susan Sarandon and Harvey Weinstein – who made a surprise visit in 2013 – usually to receive or present prizes, hold press conferences or film workshops.

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