Marrakech’s International Film Festival has awarded American Hollywood superstar Robert De Niro the Golden Star.
Rabat – Paying a homage to the legendary actor, director and producer, the festival honored yesterday De Niro with the prestigious Golden Star in tribute to his outstanding acting career.
A friend and a colleague, Martin Scorsese handed the star to De Niro.
Delighted at the homage, De Niro gave a rousing acceptance speech in which he denounced President Trump’s policies.
Without naming President Trump, De Niro said, “Sadly, in my country, we’re going through a period of grotesque version of nationalism.”
He added that this version is “Not the kind of nationalism where we celebrate the quality and character of our diverse population; but rather a diabolic form of nationalism marked by greed, xenophobia and selfishness under the banner of ‘America First.’”
The Oscar-winning actor argued that “arts don’t respect borders … the arts celebrate diversity, origins and ideas. Look at us here tonight we’re enjoying films from 29 countries; we’re united in our love for films and our common humanity.”
The speech was greeted with a standing ovation.
Speaking of the talent of De Niro, Scorsese said that the superstar has the ability to attract people’s sympathy “with some really horrific characters.”
The 17th annual film festival opened on Friday, November 30.
Moroccan celebrities, including film directors and producers, musicians, photographers, actors, and designers are also taking part in the renowned film festival.
On Saturday, Prince Moulay Rachid , who is also the President of the Foundation of Marrakech’s film festival, chaired a dinner offered by King Mohammed VI at the Palais des Congres in Marrakech.
The prince was accompanied by his sister Lalla Meryem and his wife Princess Lalla Oum Kalthoum.
In an editorial he afterwards wrote on the festival, the prince said, “After a year of reflection and introspection to redefine our editorial line, we gather once again to honor the magic of cinema.”
Quoted by Maghreb Arab Press (MAP), the prince said that “our objective is to bond cultures together in a global paradigm where migration issues are at the forefront.”
The Prince also paid tribute to renowned actors attending the festival.
We have the privilege to welcome Martin Scorsese, Robert De Niro, Agnès Varda, Robin Wright, Guillermo Del Toro, Thierry Frémaux, Cristian Mungiu, Yousry Nasrallah, Jilali Ferhati among others.”