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Oscar buzz already surrounds some of Telluride 33 features

Today marks the close of the 34th Telluride Film Festival, presented by the National Film Preserve and Apple. The sold out Festival featured many of this year’s highly anticipated films from across the globe. This celebration of art and film set among the beauty of the Rockies opened Friday, August 31 and closed today, September 3.

The Festival paid tribute to three film luminaries including Daniel Day-Lewis, whose award was presented by surprise guest Paul Thomas Anderson, director of the upcoming THERE WILL BE BLOOD, of which a small portion was shown at the tribute; three-time Academy Award® winning composer Michel Legrand; and world renowned Indian director Shyam Benegal.

Festival directors kept with tradition and treated guests to six sneak previews: Wayne Wang’s second collaboration with writer Yiyun Li, THE PRINCESS OF NEBRASKA, the untold umbilical film to A THOUSAND YEARS OF GOOD PRAYERS, which also played at this year’s Festival; THE SAVAGES, starring former Telluride tributee Laura Linney and Oscar-winning actor Phillip Seymour Hoffman, directed by Tamara Jenkins; Brian De Palma’s REDACTED; director Jason Reitman’s (THANK YOU FOR SMOKING) JUNO, starring Jennifer Garner and Jason Bateman; and two films by tributee Shyam Benegal including his 1985 film TRIKAL and, to the Festival’s knowledge, the first 35mm presentation in this country of SATYAJIT RAY, FILMMAKER.

Films previously announced that played as part of the official program are Todd McCarthy’s PIERRE RISSIENT: MAN OF CINEMA; Lee Chang-dong’s SECRET SUNSHINE; Matthew Sussman’s WHO IS NORMAN LLOYD?; Alison Eastwood’s RAILS AND TIES starring Kevin Bacon and Marcia Gay Harden; Julian Schnabel’s THE DIVING BELL AND THE BUTTERFLY; Cristian Mungiu’s 4 MONTHS, 3 WEEKS AND 2 DAYS; Eran Kolirin’s THE BAND’S VISIT; Wayne Wang’s A THOUSAND YEARS OF GOOD PRAYERS; Stefan Ruzowitzky’s (THE INHERITORS, TFF 1998) THE COUNTERFEITERS; Marjane Satrapi’s PERSEPOLIS; David Nicholl’s WHEN DID YOU LAST SEE YOUR FATHER? Starring Colin Firth and Jim Broadbent; Todd Haynes’s I’M NOT THERE starring Cate Blanchett, Christian Bale, Richard Gere, Ben Wishaw, Marcus Carl Franklin, Heath Ledger, Julianne Moore, Michelle Williams and Charlotte Gainsbourg; Barbet Schroeder’s TERROR’S ADVOCATE; Sean Penn’s INTO THE WILD; Baltasar Kormákur’s JAR CITY; Etgar Keret’s JELLYFISH; writer-director Li Yang’s BLIND MOUNTAIN; Sarah Gavron’s BRICK LANE; Oscar-winning Kevin Macdonald’s MY ENEMY’S ENEMY; Aleksei Balabanov’s CARGO 200; Noah Baumbach’s MARGOT AT THE WEDDING starring Nicole Kidman and Jennifer Jason Leigh; Werner Herzog’s ENCOUNTERS AT THE END OF THE WORLD; Khuat Akhmetov’s WIND MAN; Mark Kidel’s JOURNEY WITH PETER SELLARS; and Mark Obenhaus’s STEEP!.

Along with featuring some of today’s best contemporary filmmakers, the Festival paid tribute to the classic films and filmmakers of yesterday: Pordenone presented a George Eastman House restoration of King Vidor’s silent film, THE BIG PARADE, with a live musical performance by Gabriel Thibaudeau; BOUND BY CHASTITY RULES by Korean director Shin Sang-ok; PEOPLE ON SUNDAY, recently restored by the Netherlands Film Museum, co-directed by Robert Siodmak and Edgar G. Ulmer from a script by Billy Wilder and Kurt and Robert Siodmark, with a live performance from the Mont Alto Orchestra performing its original score; and Richard Lester’s newly restored and digitally remastered HELP!.

The 34th Telluride Film Festival’s Guest Director Edith R. Kramer, world renowned film programmer and retired Senior Film Curator and Director of the Pacific Film Archive (PFA) at University of California, Berkeley, presented five additional archival programs: GEORGE KUCHAR, MOVIEMAKER, a collection of the director’s work on 8mm preservation prints from the Anthology Film Archives; Marco Ferreri’s DILLINGER IS DEAD; Teuvo Tulio’s THE WAY YOU WANTED ME with the Finnish Film Archive’s preservation print; Frank Launder and Sidney Gilliat’s MILLIONS LIKE US restored from its original camera negative by the Australian National Film and Sound Archive; and Paul Fejos’s MARIE, A HUNGARIAN LEGEND.

Backlot, Telluride’s wildly successful intimate new screening room and film showcase featured ten films about films: A LUCKY ADVENTURER OF KOREAN FILM; BERGMAN ISLAND; CHRIS & DON: A LOVE STORY; THE DAWN OF SOUND; ESTRELLAS; FOR THE LOVE OF MOVIES; HATS OFF; MAN IN THE SHADOWS: VAL LEWTON; MAURICE PIALAT: LOVE EXISTS; and THE STORY OF THE KELLY GANG.

Also in the Backlot lobby, attendees were able to view a collection on loan from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences entitled, “Erich von Stroheim: A Life Discovered,” a photography exhibit including family photographs, handwritten documents and correspondence to demonstrate the fantasies, fictions and obsessions that would later play out in von Stroheim’s films, along with the stills from the films themselves.

TFF’s annual Medallion Award, which honors the passionate heroes of cinema including writers, historians and other film lovers, went to critic Leonard Maltin, writer of the annual Movie Guide and numerous other publications, producer, teacher and movie fan. Maltin presented REDISCOVERING VITAPHONE, a selection of rare and delightful Vitaphone short subjects.

Rounding out the Festival’s program was 26 shorts, Panels, Conversations and two student programs: Student Symposium, which provided 50 graduate and undergraduate students with a weekend-long immersion in cinema, and the City Lights Project that provided 15 high school students and five teachers from three divergent schools the opportunity to participate in a concentrated program of screenings and discussions.

The 34th Festival poster was designed by German-born, Oakland-based Mark Stock, whose work can be found in the permanent collections of the Brooklyn Museum, Museum of Modern Art (New York and San Francisco), The Library of Congress and The National Gallery.

The 2007 Telluride Film Festival’s major sponsors include Apple (presenting sponsor), Starz (lead sponsor), Pine Ridge Napa Valley Wines, Telluride Mountain Village, Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Microsoft, Heineken, Subaru, TCM, NBC Universal, Panasonic, Dolby, Variety, Kodak, Entertainment Weekly and EW.com, National Endowment for the Arts, Sony, Cornerstone, Wright Group, Boston Light and Sound and Telluride Foundation.

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