Moscow fest to fete Takeshi Kitano

Actor-director to get lifetime achievement award

MOSCOW -- Japanese actor-director Takeshi "Beat" Kitano will receive a lifetime achievement award Thursday as part of the 30th annual Moscow International Film Festival's opening ceremony.

Led off by the world premiere of Peter Berg's "Hancock," the festival will screen about 200 movies over its 10-day run.

The MIFF jury, headed by actress-director Liv Ullmann, comprises writer-director Michael Glawogger, actress Irina Rozanova, film critic Derek Malcolm and director Sebastian Alarcon. The quintet will choose the main prize winner from among 16 movies hailing from countries including Germany, France, Hungary, the U.S., Albania, Russia, Bulgaria and Iran.

This year, in a bid to promote films with artistic merits but limited commercial potential, the festival, in cooperation with the National Academy for Cinema Arts and Sciences, has introduced a grant for a distributor that will acquire rights to the festival's main prizewinner.