Spielberg to host Cuban film festival
Eight of his other films - including Saving Private Ryan, Raiders of the
Lost Ark and
Schindler's List - will be shown at four Havana theatres.
"Steven Spielberg is a filmmaker whose work is well-known and widely admired
in Cuba, by
filmmakers and audiences alike," said Omar Gonzalez, president of the Cuban film institute.
Spielberg will also visit members of Cuba's 1500-strong Jewish community,
as well as
Cuban film-makers and a film-school set up by the Colombian writer Gabriel Garcia Marquez.
He will be accompanied by his wife, actress Kate Capshaw.
"Steven has always said that film is a universal creative medium that can
reach out to people
across national boundaries and cultures," said the director's spokesman Marvin Levy.
After Cuban leader Fidel Castro took power in a coup in 1959, the US Government
banned its citizens from visiting the Communist state, and US citizens have to get
special dispensation to visit Cuba..
Spielberg's visit has been given the go-ahead by the US Treasury Department
it is a non-commercial cultural exchange.
Several other actors have visited the country in the past, including Robert
Redford, the late
Jack Lemmon and Kevin Costner.
Last year, the Manic Street Preachers became the first major Western band
to play a concert
in Cuba; their Havana performance was even attended by Castro.