The 2010 Dallas International Film Festival (DIFF), which runs from April 8-18, will play host to 153 feature films and shorts with a total of 170 screenings, including six feature film world premieres. In a bold move, the festival’s opening night will feature screenings of eight films in an effort to showcase the diverse nature of this year’s program (documentary, narrative, Mexican, Texas made and short, to name a few).
“The screening of multiple films on Opening Night is a direct result of listening to the filmmakers and our audience,” said Dallas Film Society Chairman Michael Cain in a press release. “We closed last year with multiple films and the audience loved the selection and choice. This move enables us to welcome a larger audience and turn the spotlight on more filmmaking teams who now share ownership of the Opening Night of the festival.”
The Opening Night films will screen over the eight screens of the Angelika Film Center. Included in the lineup is Richard Press’s documentary “Bill Cunningham New York,” which chronicles the life of the legendary New York Times photographer; Brooks Branch’s quirky drama “Multiple Sarcasms” starring Timothy Hutton; the 1948 Mexican classic “Nosotros Los Pobres,” from director Ismael Rodriguez; and the coming-of-age film “Skateland” from Texas bred director Anthony Burns.
The remainder of the festival’s films will screen as part of DIFF’s 16 categories. Of the 16, seven are competing categories – Narrative Feature, Documentary Feature, Texas Competition, Environmental Visions, Animation, Student Shorts, and Shorts. For a fourth consecutive year, Target is the lead sponsor for the Narrative and Documentary Feature competitions, and will award the winner of each category $25,000.
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This year’s festival will also pay tribute writer-director Guillermo Arriaga (“Babel,” “21 Grams”), writer-director John Lee Hancock (“The Rookie,” “The Blind Side”), Academy Award nominated cinematographer Wally Pfister (“The Prestige,” “The Dark Knight”) and Mexican actor Pedro Infante (“Nosostros Los Pobres”), by awarding them their annual the Dallas Star Awards.
Pixar director Pete Docter (“Monsters Inc.,” “Up”) will also be honored at DIFF, with the Texas Avery Animation Award, presented by Reel FX Entertainment.
Other films to screen at this year’s DIFF include:
(Descriptions provided by DIFF.)
“Hold” – World Premiere
Directed by Frank Mosely, the drama follows the evolution of a young couple’s relationship after a home intruder has raped the wife. Displaying the isolation of a couple bound by love, but torn by circumstance, “Hold” investigates the frailty of the hero complex and exposes the vulnerability that masculinity sometimes masks too well in the face of tragedy.
Written and directed by Derrick Borte, the film is a serio-comic social commentary on our consumerist society about the seemingly perfect couple and their gorgeous teen-aged children. The family is the envy of their posh, suburban neighborhood filled with McMansions and all the trappings of the upper middle class. But as the neighbors try to keep up with the Joneses, none are prepared for the truth about this all-too perfect family. The film stars Demi Moore, David Duchovny, Gary Cole, Lauren Hutton and Amber Heard.
“Without Her” (“Sin Ella”) – World Premiere
Directed by Jorge Colon, WITHOUT HER (Sin Ella) is a drama about a successful reality show producer whose life and relationship with his children is turned upside down following the tragic death of his ex-wife. When she appears in his thoughts to tell him what she would have done in each situation, the two begin to relive their love story.
A film that was so popular at the just concluded SXSW Film Festival that several pass holders had to be turned away at the door, the film, THUNDER SOUL is a documentary that turns the camera on a reunion of the 1970’s Kashmere High School band and its director, Conrad Johnson, which became an international funk sensation at the time. Directed by Mark Landsman, the film picks things up 30 years later, as his students return to pay tribute to the man who changed their lives.
“Virsa” – World Premiere
Directed by Pankaj Batra, this film out of Pakistan focuses on a man’s struggles to cohabitate with two generations of his family while the family itself faces similar difficulties assimilating to their adopted culture.
“Waiting for Forever”
Directed by James Keach, this Hollywood-set romance concerns a man and woman working to recapture and recover a love they had put aside when she left her home town to seek a career as a television actress. The film stars Rachel Bilson, Richard Jenkins, Blythe Danner, Nikki Blonsky and Jaime King.
“We Are the Sea” – World Premiere
Written and directed by Neil Truglio, this drama focuses on an English teacher drifting though life and trying to make sense of the direction it has taken following his recovery from the near fatal consequences of his actions. Starring Jeff Childress and Allison Savoy, the film features the music of Iron & Wine.
For the full lineup check out DIFF’s homepage.