Directors Wayne Wang, Isabel Coixet and Gaston Kabore, best-selling crime author Henning Mankell, German avant-garde artist Christoph Schlingensief and star chef Alice Waters form the eclectic competition jury for the 59th annual Berlin International Film Festival.
Oscar-winning actress Tilda Swinton will preside as president of this year's Berlinale jury, which will pick the winners of the Golden and Silver Bears as well as the Alfred Bauer Prize for most innovative work in the 2009 competition.
For Berlin regulars, it's a familiar lineup. Coixet has been to the Berlinale four times, most recently with last year's competition entry "Elegy." Wang won a Silver Bear at the 1995 event with "Smoke." Kobore films including "Zan Boko" (1989) and "God's Gift" (1982) have screened in various Berlinale sidebars.
Schlingensief, in addition to being one of Germany's best-known modern artists, is an occasional filmmaker. Several of his trashier efforts, including "The German Chainsaw Massacre" (1991) and "100 Years of Adolf Hitler" premiered at the Berlinale.
Swinton also is a Berlinale regular. Last year, she starred in the competition title "Julia" and received a special Teddy award for her work with late U.K. director Derek Jarman.
Mankell, though not well known in the English-speaking world, is a household name across most of continental Europe. His crime novels, particular his "Inspector Wallander" books, are international best sellers and have been turned into successful films and TV series. Kenneth Branagh starred as Wallander in a trio of recent BBC adaptations based on Mankell's detective.
Waters, an award-winning American chef and film aficionado, has one of the most impressive footnotes in cinema history: she was the chef who cooked the shoe consumed by director Werner Herzog in Les Blank's 1980 documentary "Werner Herzog Eats His Shoe."