Sunday, August 23, 2009

San Sebastián IFF Sets Competition

The 57th San Sebastián International Film Festival (SIFF) film competition for the Golden Shell will open 18 September with Canadian director Atom Egoyan's CHLOE, starring Liam Neeson, Julianne Moore and Amanda Seyfried. This is first time Egoyan will have a film in competition at the SSIFF.

Columbian born writer and director Rodrigo García, son of Colombian writer Gabriel Garcia Márquez, will close the Festival with his North American film MOTHER and CHILD, starring Naomi Watts, Annette Bening and Samuel L. Jackson. One of Garcia's best known films is NINE LIVES, 2005, and he has extensive credits in television.

American Aaron Schneider, Academy Award winner for Best Short Film, TWO SOLDIERS, 2003, will bring his directorial feature debut, GET LOW, which stars the Donostia Award recipient Robert Duvall, alongside Bill Murray and Sissy Spacek. GET LOW will also compete for the Kutxa-New Directors Award along with 17 others.

From Turkey comes the winner of the SSIFF's Zabaltegi-New Directors in 2005.Turkish director Pelin Esmer, who won with her directorial feature debut OYUN (The Play), will compete for the first time in the Official Selection with 10 to 11 (11’e 10 kala), a co-production between Turkey, France and Germany.

Three of France’s most prestigious directors will enter the competition. Bruno Dumont, having bagged the Cannes Grand Jury Prize twice with L’Humanité (1999) and FLANDERS (2006), will bring HADEWIJCH. François Ozon will present REFUGE (Le refuge). Christophe Honoré returns to the Official Selection for the second consecutive year with MAKING PLANS FOR LENA, starring Chiara Mastroianni, Marie-Christine Barrault and Jean-Marc Barr.

German cinema will be represented by Matthias Glasner with THIS IS LOVE. From Argentina, Juan José Campanella adds THE SECRET OF YOUR EYES (El secreto de sus ojos).

Three Spanish films will participate in the competitive Official Selection: THE DAMNED (Los condenados), THE WOMAN WITHOUT A PIANO (La mujer sin piano), and ME, TOO (Yo, también). In additioin, Fernando Trueba will present THE DANCER AND THE THIEF (El baile de la Victoria) out of competition.

From Iran there is THE WHITE MEADOWS (Keshtzarhaye sepid) by Mohammad Rasoulof. Asia will be represented by South Korean Jeon Soo-il's I CAME FROM BUSAN, and Chinese director Lu Chuan's THE CITY OF LIFE AND DEATH. Lu Chuan is also known as Chuan Lu.

Zabaltegi-Pearls, the showcase for movies feted at the big international festivals but not yet released in Spain, with open with Quentin Tarantino's INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS (Tarantino's spelling). This film, winner of the Best Actor Award for Christoph Waltz at Cannes, will be screened on the first day of the 57th edition on Friday, 18 September.

Also in this showcase are new films by Woody Allen (WHATEVER WORKS), Ang Lee (TAKING WOODSTOCK), Jim Jarmusch (THE LIMITS OF CONTROL, filmed in Madrid), Bahman Ghobadi (NO ONE KNOWS ABOUT PERSIAN CATS), Bong Joon-ho (MOTHER) and Johnnie To (VENGEANCE).

PRECIOUS, the big hit at Sundance Festival, winner of the Special Jury Prize, Best Actress for Mo’Nique and Audience Award, will also be screened in Zabaltegi-Pearls. This movie, initially presented at Sundance and Cannes with the title of PUSH, directed by Lee Daniels, is based on the novel by Sapphire.

Overall, 18 films will compete in competition (Official Selection), 13 Latin American films will compete for the Horizons Award, 17 in the Kutxa-New Directors, plus other sections, and more are yet to be announced. See previous posts for previously announced events, etc. Click title of this post to go to Web site for much more info.

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