By Brian Brooks | Indiewire December 20, 2007 at 12:40AM
A roster of 222 films from 66 countries are on tap for the 19th Palm Springs International Film Festival, including 69 premieres (4 World, 40 U.S. and 25 North American) in addition to 55 of the 63 films submitted for best foreign language Oscar consideration. As previously announced, Helen Hunt's U.S. debut "Then She Found Me" will open the festival taking place in the California desert community January 3 - 14. Romantic comedy "Priceless" by French director Pierre Salvadori, starring Audrey Tautou and Gad Elmaleh will close the festival January 13.
World premieres at the festival include: "Chihuly in the Hotshop" by Peter West (USA), "Cosmic Radio" by Steven Savage (USA), "Hollywood Singing & Dancing" by Mark McLaughlin (USA) and Icons by Teddy Grouya (USA/Romania/Bulgaria).
PSIFF films screening as North American premieres are: "881" (Singapore/Japan), "The Art of Travel" (USA), "The Best of Me" (Spain), "Breath" (South Korea), "Burn the Bridges" (Mexico), "City of Men" (Brazil), "Eight Twenty Eight" (Israel), "How About You" (Ireland), "Investigation" (Bulgaria), "It's Hard to Be Nice" (Bosnia), "Jani Gal" (Iraq), "King of Fire" (Thailand), "Late Bloomers" (Switzerland), "M for Mother" (Iran), "Noodle" (Israel), "Oxen's Eye" (Brazil), "Possible Lives" (Argentina/Germany), "Protege" (Hong Kong), "The Reject" (Serbia), "Return of the Storks" (Slovakia/Germany/Czech Republic), "The Roses of the Desert" (Italy), "Saturn in Opposition" (Italy), "Shotgun Stories" (USA), "Sparkle" (UK) and "The Stone Angel" (Canada).
Twenty-five films from Latin America, Spain and Portugal will screen in the Festival's Cine Latino program, which will highlight emerging talent from the Latino film world. World Cinema Now will feature 77 films in a wide-ranging overview of contemporary international cinema. True Stories highlights 25 of the best new films in contemporary non-fiction cinema. Three films have been selected as Special Presentations including "The Band's Visit" (Israel/USA/France) directed by Eran Kolirin and the previously announced outdoor sing-along screening of "Hairspray" (USA) and "Honeydripper" directed by John Sayles.
"We've streamlined the festival line-up this year, trimming the overall numbers while adding some exciting new features and showcases," commented PSIFF director Darryl Macdonald in a statement. "The result is a richer and more focused event that maintains the festival's concentration on quality international programming, while highlighting the diversity of its offerings in a more accessible, audience-friendly way."
[For more information and a full line up, visit the festival's website.]