The 16th Annual Palm Springs International Film Festival has announced its roster of 190 films, culled from more than 65 countries for the 2005 Festival. The selection of films for screening includes a total of 79 premieres (14 World, 45 U.S. and 20 North American). Also 41 of the 50 films submitted for consideration in the Best Foreign Language Film category for the Academy Awards will be screened at this year’s Festival, held from January 6-17, 2005.

This year’s festival will open on Thursday, January 6, 2005 with Paramount Pictures’ Coach Carter, directed by Thomas Carter (Save the Last Dance), starring Samuel L. Jackson, Robert Ri’Chard, Rob Brown, Debbi Morgan and Ashanti. Coach Ken Carter and the film’s director are expected to attend the screening. The film’s star Samuel L. Jackson will be honored at the Festival’s Awards Gala on Saturday, January 8, 2005 with the Career Achievement Award for Acting. Based on a true-life story, Coach Carter is an inspirational account of controversial high school basketball coach Ken Carter (Samuel L. Jackson), who received high praise and staunch criticism when he made national news for benching his entire undefeated team for poor academic performance.

The Festival will close on Sunday, January 16, 2005 with the U.S. premiere of Ladies in Lavender (United Kingdom), directed by Charles Dance, starring Judi Dench and Maggie Smith. The film follows two spinster sisters whose emotions are unleashed after a dapper young foreigner washes ashore on their beach on the eve of World War II.

Other International Gala Screenings include the World Premiere of The Thing About My Folks (USA), directed by Raymond De Felita, starring Peter Falk, Paul Reiser and Olympia Dukakis; the North American Premiere of Roma (Argentina/Spain), directed by Adolfo Aristarain; and the U.S. Premieres of Prom Queen (Canada), directed by John L’Ecuyer; The Story of My Life (France), directed by Laurent Tirard; and Red Dust (South Africa/United Kingdom), directed by Tom Hooper, starring Academy Award winner Hilary Swank.


Five films have been selected as Special Presentations featuring acclaimed films marking their U.S. or World Premieres, including the World Premieres of the controversial documentary on Lew Wasserman, The Last Mogul (USA/Canada), directed by Barry Avrich, and Life of the Party (USA), directed by Barra Grant, starring Eion Bailey. Other films selected in this program include the U.S. Premieres of 5 X 2 – Five Times Two (France), directed by Francois Ozon; Millions (United Kingdom/USA), directed by Danny Boyle; and Summer Storm (Germany), directed by Marco Kreuzpaintner.


The Festival will offer a selection of 79 premieres of highly anticipated films showcasing the diversity of international cinema. World Premieres include Americano (USA/Spain), starring Joshua Jackson and Dennis Hopper, Everything Blue (Brazil/Mexico), Decryptage (France), Sergeant Pepper (Germany), The Civilization of Maxwell Bright (USA), Going Through Splat: The Life and Work of Stewart Stern (USA), Hate Crime (USA), The Last Mogul (USA/Canada), Life of the Party (USA), Ocean Odyssey (USA/Canada, Kingdom of Tonga), Say Yes Quickly (USA), The Thing About My Folks (USA), Voices In Wartime (USA).

North American Premieres include Nietos (Identity and Memory) (Argentina), Roma (Argentina/Spain), Cazuza, There’s No Stopping Time (Brazil), The Diary of a Provincial Girl (Brazil), Day and Night (China/France), El Rey (Colombia/France, Spain), Long Dark Night (Croatia), A Wonderful Night in Split (Croatia), Eros Therapy (France), Inguélézi (France), Yesterday Once More (Hong Kong), Changing Destiny (Italy), Consequences of Love (Italy), The Welts (Poland), The Miracle According to Salomé (Portugal/France), Goose Feather (Serbia/Montenergo), Beneath Her Window (Slovenia), Bars in the Memory (Spain), Hours of Light (Spain), As It Is In Heaven (Sweden).

U.S. Premieres include Earth and Ashes (Afghanistan/France), It’s Not You, It’s Me (Argentina), Little Sky (Argentina), The Alzheimer Case (Belgium), La Femme de Gilles (Belgium), Almost Brothers (Brazil), Mila from Mars (Bulgaria), Prom Queen (Canada), White Skin (Canada), Wilby Wonderful (Canada), Electric Shadows (China), Two Great Sheep (China), The Art of Losing (Columbia/Spain), Three Times Two (Cuba), Return to Sender (Denmark/UK), Strings (Denmark/Sweden; UK; Norway), 5 X 2 – Five Times Two (France), Bad Spelling (France), Deadlines (France/UK, Tunisia), Genesis (France/Italy), When the Tide Comes In (France), The Story of My Life (France), Downfall (Germany), The Ninth Day (Germany/Luxembourg), Summer Storm (Germany), Cold Light (Iceland/UK, Norway, Germany), Avanim (Israel/France), First Love (Italy), An Italian Romance (Italy/France), Vento di Terra (Italy), Marebito (Japan), The Hunter (Kazakhstan/Japan/France/Switzerland/the Netherlands), Tarfaya (Morocco/France), Justice (Netherlands), Uno (Norway), Midwinter Night’s Dream (Serbia/Montenegro), Forgiveness (South Africa), Red Dust (South Africa/United Kingdom), Spider Forest (South Korea), Sternenberg (Switzerland), 20:30:40 (Taiwan), Formula 17 (Taiwan), Ladies in Lavender (United Kingdom), Millions (United Kingdom/USA), Land of Plenty (USA/Germany).

For the full program, visit the Palm Springs International Film Festival website.

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