Robert De Niro - Robert De Niro's festival pride

Robert De Niro is proud of the Tribeca festival.

'The Godfather Part II' actor helped set up the movie festival in 2002 to celebrate New York City as a centre for filmmaking and is delighted the world-famous event - which runs until April 28 - has had such a big impact.

He said: ''I'm happy that the festival has gone on this long and has had an impact on people; local, national and international.

''I'm very proud that it's becoming a part of the fabric of New York and tradition. Very proud.''

The award-winning actor decided to take the plunge in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks in order to boost morale and rebuild the local community.

De Niro, 69, explained: ''We had talked about a festival. Then when 9/11 happened and the neighbourhood was devastates, we just decided to do it.

''We didn't know what would happen. We put it together in, what, 120 days? That's how it was born.''

Quizzed about this year's line-up, he revealed he already has a few favourite entries.

De Niro told ShortList magazine: ''The one on Gore Vidal, 'The United States of Amnesia' and a wonderful film called 'Red Obsession' - which I thought was very interesting about the Chinese buying all the wine in France.''


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