In the wake of recent violent attacks in Paris and San Bernardino, California, the mood has been reflective and somber at the Marrakech International Film Festival this year.
A group of global filmmakers and artists have descended on the Moroccan city, which is itself a place where European culture melts into Arabic and North African traditions. Upon receiving his Etoile D’Or Lifetime Achievement Award on opening night, Bill Murray spoke emotionally about his heartbreak over the recent terror attacks, and many of the other filmmakers present have expressed similar sentiments. Canadian director Atom Egoyan, the head of the Canadian delegation receiving a tribute to Canadian cinema mentioned that in the face of fear, it was more important than ever to come together in this country and celebrate art that can unite. This was in line with what Italian actor/director and jury member Sergio Castellito said during the jury press conference, when he said that coming to Morocco was an act of goodwill and a political gesture in the wake of paralyzing events. The Playlist