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Tim Burton to head Cannes jury

63rd edition of festival set to run May 12-23

PARIS -- Director Tim Burton will head from Wonderland to the French Riviera in May to preside over the jury at the 63rd Festival de Cannes, organizers said Tuesday.

Burton is no stranger to the Croisette. He was a member of the Cannes jury in 1997 and the short film jury in 2006. His "Ed Wood" biography screened at Cannes in 1995.

"After spending my early life watching triple features and 48-hour horror movie marathons, I'm finally ready for this," Burton said of the honor, adding: "When you think of Cannes, you think of world cinema. And as films have always been like dreams to me, this is a dream come true."

Burton has 14 feature films under his belt, including hits such as "Beetlejuice" and "Edward Scissorhands." His upcoming 3D adaptation of Lewis Carroll's "Alice in Wonderland" will hit U.S. theaters March 5 before its Gallic release April 7. 

After last year's 3D "Up" opener, Cannes president Gilles Jacob and his team are once again embracing the animation genre.

"It's the first time an artist whose origins are in animation will preside over the jury of the Festival de Cannes," Jacob said. He added: "We hope his sweet madness and gothic humor will pervade the Croisette, bringing Christmas to all. Christmas and Halloween."

The Festival de Cannes is set to run May 12-23, and its official selection will be announced in mid-April.