Giuseppe Tornatore named Rome fest jury head

International Rome Film Festival runs Oct. 28-Nov. 5

ROME -- Oscar-winning director Giuseppe Tornatore will head the main jury at the fifth edition of the International Rome Film Festival, artistic director Piera Detassis and festival president Gian Luigi Rondi said Monday.

Tornatore's "Cinema Paradiso" won the Oscar for best foreign-language film in 1989, but has attracted Italian headlines more recently when his epic biopic "Baaria" failed to earn any hardware at the Golden Globes and was left off the shortlist for the foreign-language Oscars. The Italian media interpreted the developments as proof that Italian cinema was on the wane internationally.

Heading the Rome jury will likely keep Tornatore in the public eye as the Oct. 28-Nov. 5 festival approaches. In 2009, the festival's first year with a traditional festival jury, Milos Foreman headed the jury.

In a statement, Rondi praised Tornatore's career, calling him one of the outstanding figures of Italian cinema responsible for "expanding he frontiers of the cinematic arts."