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Cannes has majority female jury, first time since 2009

PARIS (Reuters) - New Zealand director Jane Campion will head a jury of five women and four men for this year's Cannes international film festival - its first majority female judging panel since 2009.

The world's most prestigious international film festival, which made the announcement on Monday, has often been criticized for giving short shrift to women in cinema.

Campion is the only female director ever to win the festival's top prize, the Palme d'Or, which she secured with her 1993 film "The Piano".

Joining her will be American director Sofia Coppola and actresses Carole Bouquet from France, Leila Hatami of Iran and South Korea's Jeon Do-yeon, the festival said.

Also on the panel will be American actor Willem Dafoe, Mexican actor and director Garcia Bernal, Chinese director Jia Zhanke and Danish director Nicolas Winding Refn.

Two of the 18 feature-length films in competition this year were made by women - Japanese director Naomi Kawase's “Still the Water” and Italian director Alice Rohrwacher's “Le Meraviglie”.

(Reporting by Michael Roddy; Editing by Andrew Heavens)

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