Laurent Cantet's Palme d'Or winner The Class (Entre Les Murs) will open this year's Munich Filmfest on Friday evening (June 20), which will show 237 films from 41 countries, including a retrospective dedicated to the Bavarian film-maker and artist Herbert Achternbusch and an homage to the UK actress Julie Christie who will be presented with the CineMerit Award for her services to cinema on June 27.

Sundance Festival director Geoff Gilmore, Celluloid Dreams' festivals director Pascale Ramonda and film academic Paul Majkut will be serving on the jury for the newly created ARRI-Zeiss Award for the best international film in the festival programme.

They will select their winner from among 14 titles including Ari Folman's Waltz With Bashir, Rolando Colla's The Other Half (Switzerland), Ole Bornedal's Just Another Love Story, and Paolo Sorrentino's Il Divo.

Meanwhile, Israeli filmmaker Eran Kolirin, whose internationally successful debut The Band's Visit was the opening film and the Audience Award winner in Munich last year, will be joined on the jury of the CineVision Award for best international newcomer film by Munich producer Jakob Claussen and Czech producer-festival programmer Stefan Uhrik.

The 15 competing films include Jasmine Yuen-Carrucan's Cactus, Shivajee Chandrabhushan's Frozen, Paris Leonti's Daylight Robbery, Omar Shargawi's Go With Peace Jamil, Hanro Smitsman's Skin, and Marko Nabersnik's Rooster's Breakfast.

In addition, director Marcus H. Rosenmüller, actress Fritzi Haberlandt and producer Christian Becker have been named as this year's jury for the Young German Cinema Award in the categories of Best Director, Best Screenplay and Best Actor/Actress.

This award, which is sponsored by the the HypoVereinsbank, Bavaria Film and the local broadcaster BR, will be presented during the festival on June 25.

The 26th edition of the Filmfest will close on Saturday, June 28 with the world premiere of Peter Schamoni's artist portrait Botero - Born In Medellin with the painter Fernando Botero and the film's narrator Mario Adorf in attendance.