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The Calgary International Film Festival line-up

The Calgary International Film Festival (CIFF) presented by American Express is pleased to announce select highlights of the 2007 Festival line-up. The 8th annual edition of CIFF runs September 21-30, 2007. The complete line-up, as well as the sale of tickets and passes, will be available online on Friday, August 31, 2007 at www.calgaryfilm.com.

“This year’s CIFF line-up includes award-winning and notable films making news at festivals in Canada and around the world, as well as those films that represent the finest filmmaking across Canada this past year,” explains CIFF Executive Director Jacqueline Dupuis. “CIFF exists to enlighten and entertain through the experience of film. I have no doubt that this year’s line-up will prove, once again, our commitment to building a great experience for filmmakers and Festival goers.”

The Canadian Filmworks series celebrates one of its strongest line-ups of films including Allan Moyle’s (EMPIRE RECORDS, PUMP UP THE VOLUME) newest feature WEIRDSVILLE, a black comedy about two junkies (Scott Speedman and Wes Bentley) on the run from a satanic cult; NORMAL, directed by Carl Bessai (UNNATURAL & ACCIDENTAL), featuring Carrie-Anne Moss in a drama about three strangers who struggle to come to terms with a tragic accident; THE STONE ANGEL based on the classic Canadian novel by Margaret Laurence under the direction of Kari Skogland (CHICKS WITH STICKS) and starring Ellen Burstyn; THE TRACEY FRAGMENTS from the novel by Maureen Medved and directed by one of Canada’s most celebrated independent filmmakers, Bruce McDonald (ROADKILL, HIGHWAY 61, DANCE ME OUTSIDE, HARD CORE LOGO); SURVIVING MY MOTHER directed by MAMBO ITALINO director Émile Gaudreault; and BREAKFAST WITH SCOT, a touching and funny family story with a unique boy and parents, by Award-winning director Laurie Lynd.

Highlighting the best of narrative feature films outside of Canada and the US, the Contemporary World Cinema series showcases a broad range of titles, focusing on diverse ethnic and cultural themes, and representing many different nationalities highlighting the communities that make up Calgary’s civic identity. CIFF highlights three Cannes Film Festival award winners with 4 MONTHS, 3 WEEKS, 2 DAYS, winner of the Palm d’Or, from Romanian director Cristian Mungui, is a harrowing tale of the grim lengths to which two young women will go to end an unwelcome pregnancy in communist Romania; winning the Prize of Jury, PERSEPOLIS, directed by Vincent Paronnaud and Marjane Satrapi (France), is an animated film based on Iranian author Marjane Satrapi’s internationally best-selling and award-winning graphic novel about a young girl in Iran during the Islamic Revolution; and THE EDGE OF HEAVEN, a Germany/Turkey co-production from director Fatih Akin (CROSSING THE BRIDGE: THE SOUND OF ISTANBUL, HEAD-ON) won the Award for Best Screenplay. Other notable titles include: SLEUTH, directed by Kenneth Branagh, is a remake of the 1972 film featuring Michael Caine as an aging writer who, on his sprawling country estate, matches wits with the struggling actor (Jude Law) who has stolen his wife's heart; KHADAK (THE COLOUR OF WATER) directed by Peter Brosens and Jessica Hope Woodworth is a Belgium/Germany/ Netherlands co-production that was nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at the 2007 Sundance Film Festival and was winner of the Luigi De Laurentiis Award at the 2006 Venice Film Festival; and THE TRUE LEGEND OF TONY VILAR from Italian director Giuseppe Gagliardi is a musical mockumentary based on the true story of 1960s South American pop star Tony Vilar.

Celebrating filmmakers who take the road of independent film in the U.S.A., the American Independent series celebrates films from some of America’s most notable filmmakers including THE WALKER by director Paul Schrader (AMERICAN GIGOLO, CAT PEOPLE) with a cast featuring Woody Harrelson, Kristin Scott Thomas, Lauren Bacall, Ned Beatty and Moritz Bleibtreu; HOTEL ROWANDA director Terry George’s RESERVATION ROAD, a psychological thriller based on the novel by John Burnham Schwartz and features Joaquin Phoenix, Mark Ruffalo, Jennifer Connelly and Mira Sorvino; Nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at the 2007 Sundance Film Festival, Andrew Wagner’s STARTING OUT IN THE EVENING about an ambitious graduate student (Lauren Ambrose) who convinces a writer (Frank Langella) that her thesis can resurrect his career; and THE JANE AUSTEN BOOK CLUB by director and screenwriter Robin Swicord (MEMOIRS OF A GEISHA, MATILDA) features an ensemble cast including Kathy Baker, Maria Bello, Emily Blunt, Amy Brenneman, Hugh Dancy and Lynn Redgrave in a story about a group of Californians who start a club to discuss the works of Jane Austen, only to find their relationships begin to resemble 21st-century versions of her novels.

Realilty Reels, CIFF’s program of feature-length documentaries from Canada and around the world presents something for everyone: MEDITATE AND DESTROY from American director Sarah Fisher is a feature documentary about punk rock, spirituality and inner rebellion featuring Noah Levine, meditation teacher and author of Dharma Punx and Against the Stream; the award winning Canadian documentary by Bryan Friedman reunites him with his long-estranged 59-year-old bodybuilding father in THE BODY BUILDER & I; and NANKING, an acclaimed dramatized documentary by directing team Bill Guttentag and Dan Sturman (TWIN TOWERS), tells the story of the Japanese invasion of Nanking, China, in the early days of World War II and focuses on the efforts of a small group of unarmed Westerners who established a Safety Zone where over 200,000 Chinese found refuge.

In addition to the above selections CIFF 2007 will present 255 films within 13 unique film series including the Aboriginal Showcase, Art & Architecture, Hump Night, The Family Series, Late Shows, Music on Film, Beyond Borders, Short Film Programs, Contemporary World Cinema, Reality Reels, American Independent, International Spotlight on Australia, and Canadian Filmworks. With three Gala Presentations, numerous special presentations and initiatives, and eight awards over the 10-day Festival, additional announcements will be made soon.

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