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Festivals

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    DAILY DISPATCH FROM BERLIN: Personal And Political, Winterbottom's "Guantanamo" Jolts Berlinale

    A timely new British film about the horrors of the U.S. detention center at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba is poised to be the buzz film of the Berlinale this year. "The Road to Guantanamo" screened for press this afternoon at the Berlin International Film Festival and will have its official world premiere to...

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    BERLINALE CRITIC'S DIARY: At Halfway Point, Competition Films Disappoint, But Delicate "Soap" and Sh

    For years, I've been trying to convince festival-going friends that the main competition at Berlin is at least the equal of its more famous rival at Cannes. As evidence, let me offer some of the films in last year's Berlin competition: "Paradise Now," "Sophie Scholl," "The Beat That My Heart Skipp...

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    DAILY DISPATCH FROM BERLIN: Altman's Latest, "Prairie"; Strand Gets "Sky"; Manson's Movie; and Parti

    It is hard not to watch Robert Altman's 37th feature, "A Prairie Home Companion" -- a film about the end of Garrison Keillor's long-running American radio program -- without thinking about the film as perhaps one of the last from the maverick filmmaker. In the movie, the main character struggles to avoid dealing with a major change in his own career. Not that any of those who cheered "Prairie" here at the Berlinale are hoping Altman will stop directing, but his age -- he will turn 81 years old next week -- was an issue for the backers of this latest feature. Paul Thomas Anderson was hired as a back-up director and had to be on set whenever Al...

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    Redford on the Sundance Film Festival

    Robert Redford has said the Sundance Film Festival, which he began hosting 25 years ago, is getting too intense. "To the outside world, it's a big fat market where you have people like Paris Hilton going to parties. Now, she doesn't have anything to do with anything. I think the festival is close to...

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    Actor McKellen Accepts Lifetime Achievement Award, Criticizes Hollywood

    "I still hope I've got a lot of life left on stage and making films," said actor Ian McKellen, who received an Honorary Golden Bear award for lifetime achievement at the Berlin International Film Festival, the AP reports. Other media outlets emphasize, however, McKellen's critical attitude toward Hollywood's treatment of gay actors. "'It is very, very, very difficult for an American actor who wants a film career to be open about his sexuality,'" he is quoted as saying in a BBC report. McKellen, who is openly gay, also said that while more films about homosexuality might be made following the success of "Brokeback Mountain," "the film industry...

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    Greenwald's "WAL-MART" Finds Eager Distributors Overseas

    Robert Greenwald's "WAL-MART: The High Cost of Low Price" has been picked up for theatrical release in Britain, Germany and Australia/New Zealand at the Berlin International Film Festival. Deals are apparently in the works for Spain, Belgium/the Netherlands/Luxembourg and France. "The Panorama film ...

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    SXSW Film Festival Shorts Lineup Announced

    The South by Southwest (SXSW) Film Festival announced today this year's lineup of shorts. From over 2,800 submissions, the festival selected 130 shorts from around the world, divided into six categories: documentary, narrative, animated, experimental, music video and Texas High School Shorts (work by Texas teens). Shorts that will screen include TV personality Maria Menounos' "Longtime Listener," about an electronics store clerk who lives his life through talk radio and comic Bob Odenkirk's "Derek & Simon: The Pity Card," about a first date at a Holocaust museum. "From young filmmakers in Jamaica to animators plugging away on their own, to so...

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    MORE: Shorts
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    Celluloid Busy In Berlin With "Particles" and "Quinceanera"

    Celluloid Dreams has announced a number of deals for two Berlinale titles, the fest competition entry "The Elementary Particles" and the Sundance award winner "Quinceanera". Oskar Roehler's "Particles" has already been sold in France (TFM), Benelux (ABC), Spain (Golem) , Italy (Lucky Red), Scandinavia (Non Stop Entertainment), South Korea (Sponge), Taiwan (Pandasia), Switzerland (Rialto), Portugal (Atalanta), Greece (Audiovisual), Canada (Seville), UK (Momentum), Israel (United King), Brazil (Providence), and Eastern Europe. Celluloid's Hengameh Panahi said in a statement today that the company has had multiple bidders for the adapation of th...

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    DAILY DISPATCH FROM BERLIN: Gondry's "Sleep," Takashi Miike Goes Violent, and Cillian Murphy Talks "

    French director Michel Gondry traveled from Utah to Berlin - along with many others here - in support of his surreal love story, "The Science of Sleep" starring Gael Garcia Bernal and Charlotte Gainsbourg. The mostly English-language film, shot in France, is the story of Stephane (Bernal) who returns to his hometown to take a job and begins a relationship with his neighbor. The job does not quite pan out as expected, but his relationship blossoms, fed by his fantastic dream-life. Although life seems to be on the upswing, his anxieties again manifest. The film uses a multi-tiered look inside the mind of the Bernal's character, filled with fear...

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    DAILY DISPATCH FROM BERLIN: German Chancellor's Visit Shines Even Greater Spotlight on Expanded EFM

    At the Berlinale on Friday, George Clooney caused a stir among media and fans over at Potsdamer Platz, but a power player whose influence trumps any of the buyers, sellers, or stars doing business in Berlin stepped onto the floor of the expanded European Film Market at Martin Gropius Bau. New German Chancellor Angela Merkel spent nearly 45 minutes touring the EFM and chatting with film industry attendees at the Berlinale at about 1 p.m. Friday afternoon. Accompanied by Berlinale festival director Dieter Kosslick, longtime EFM head Beki Probst and Germany's Minister for Media and Cultural Affairs Bernd Neumann, Merkel visited with a number of ...

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