Campion to head Cannes film jury

The Oscar-winning New Zealand director succeeds US director Steven Spielberg.

Oscar-winning New Zealand director Jane Campion will head the jury for the 67th Cannes film festival in May. Picture: Twitter.

PARIS - Oscar-winning New Zealand director Jane Campion will head the jury for the 67th Cannes film festival in May.

Campion, who won an Oscar for best screenplay for her 1993 film _The Piano _and is the only woman ever to win the top Cannes prize film, the Palme d'or, succeeds US director Steven Spielberg who headed the jury last year.

"I am truly honoured to join with the Cannes Film Festival as president of the in-competition features for 2014. In fact I can't wait," Campion said in a statement issued by the festival.

Campion lauded Cannes's ability to celebrate the glamour of the film industry with its stars and parties while "rigorously maintaining the festival's seriousness about the art and excellence of new world cinema".

Campion, who was born in Wellington and originally studied to be an anthropologist, started making short films in the 1980s and won the top Cannes prize for a short feature in 1986.

Her other films include The Portrait of a Lady based on the Henry James novel, _Holy Smoke _and In the Cut.