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NEW THIS WEEK: Taking on “Mission,” Possible: Eight Specialty Films Open this Weekend

NEW THIS WEEK: Taking on "Mission," Possible: Eight Specialty Films Open this Weekend

Well over a half-dozen films will vie with the Tom Cruise juggernaut “M:i III” for a slice of box office glory this weekend. Sundance ’06 offerings include “Bad Santa” director Terry Zwigoff‘s “Art School Confidential,” while Toronto ’05’s “One Last Thing” by Alex Steyermark (“Prey for Rock & Roll“) will hit screens. From overseas comes Chinese director Chen Kaige‘s epic “The Promise,” while from down under is John Hillcoat‘s crime drama “The Proposition,” which picked up kudos in Oz. Controversial Cannes ’05 feature “Down in the Valley” by David Jacobson will also have its theatrical opening.

The film, starring Edward Norton (who also served as a producer) about a man who falls for a teen reportedly turned off some distributors, according to a recent New York Times article about the film’s difficulty finding a U.S. home during the festival. But the feature landed at THINKFilm, whose execs saw the film that year in Cannes. “[It’s] that rare indie film that had real size, scope and ambition,” said THINKFilm’s U.S. head Mark Urman to indieWIRE. “It’s great to look at very romantic and sexy, and then, when it deepens and darkens and gets wild, it does so in a very grand and glorious manner. Absolutely nothing about the film is small or timid or modes, and we almost never see that anymore.” THINKFilm will open the film in L.A., Boston and Washington, D.C. on May 12th, according to Urman, followed by more cities on May 19th.

This Week’s Specialty Openings:

Terry Zwigoff‘s Art School Confidential delves into the life of an art-school student and his idealistic dream to become the one of the greatest artists in the world. The film is Zwigoff’s second collaboration with graphic novelist Daniel Clowes, who first joined him in making “Ghost World.” (Sony Pictures Classics) Opens May 5.

In Ralph Arlyck‘s documentary, Following Sean the filmmaker sets out to find Sean, the four-year-old boy he filmed in 1969 living in a San Francisco commune. (Upstate Films and Shadow Distribution) Opens May 3.

William Tyler Smith‘s Kiss Me Again is about a married couple in Brooklyn who consider having an open marriage. Things get complicated when the husband, who is a politcal science professor, asks one of his students to have a threesome with him and his wife. (M.E.G.A. Films) Opens May 5.

In Alex Steyermark‘s One Last Thing,” a terminally ill teenage boy goes on national TV and gets his dying wish–to spend a weekend with a supermodel– fulfilled. (Magnolia Pictures) Opens May 5.

Chen Kaige‘s The Promise,” is an epic tale set in ancient China, about a duke, a general and a slave who are all vying for the attention of a princess. (Warner Independent Pictures) Opens May 5.

Set in rural Australia during the late 19th century, John Hillcoat‘s drama The Proposition is about two men involved in a rape and murder of a settler family, and their attempt to go unpunished. (First Look Films). Opens May 5.

Richard Squires’ Crazy Like a Fox centers on a man who gets cheated by big-city speculators out of his Virginia farm. The gentleman farmer Nat Banks leaves his family and makes a new home in a cave on the creek, inspiring a community-wide rebellion as he eventually fights his way back home. (Freestlyle Releasing. Opens May 5.

David Jacobson’s Down in the Valley focuses on a cowboy leaving in a suburb of L.A. who has a chance encounter with a bored suburban teenager. Despite obvious differences in their backgrounds and against the wishes of the girl’s father, the two pursue a romance.

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