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Anderson's film opens Berlin fest

Wes Anderson and Bill Murray attended the Berlin premiere of The Grand Budapest Hotel: Photo © Anderson's film opens Berlin fest Photo

Bill Murray has joked that the cast of The Grand Budapest Hotel worked for "long hours, low wages and stale bread" as the movie opened the Berlin International Film Festival.

The actor was on the red carpet at the event in Germany alongside director Wes Anderson.

The caper - set in a fictional spa town in pre-World War II Europe - also stars Ralph Fiennes, Edward Norton, Jeff Goldblum, Tilda Swinton, Willem Dafoe, Jude Law, Adrien Brody and Saoirse Ronan.

Asked how filmmaker Wes managed to get big actors to sign up for smaller roles, Bill joked: " We are promised very long hours and low wages - and stale bread. That's pretty much it."

He continued: " You get to see the world and we're allowed to let Wes live this wonderful magical life he has where his dreamscape comes true. So we show up, he gets to have all the fun. I guess it's because we like him that we go along."

British actor Ralph is the central figure, fastidious hotel concierge Monsiur Gustave - and Wes said no one else would do.

The part was "written with Ralph in mind", he said. "This character is quite grand and theatrical and has to recite poetry and has paragraphs of text."

Tilda plays an 84-year-old countess named Madame D, whose sudden death sets off a scramble to claim her fortune.

"Madame D is what I look like when I don't put on all this make-up," said the 53-year-old actress. "I am very, very, very, very old."

The Grand Budapest Hotel is the first of 20 competing for the festival's main Golden Bear award.

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