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By Film Threat Staff | March 17, 2003

The Philadelphia Film Society has announced the Opening and Closing Night Films for the 2003 Philadelphia Film Festival, running from April 3-17.
The Festival will begin on Thursday, April 3, at the Prince Music Theater with the East Coast premiere of CONFIDENCE, directed by James Foley (“FEAR,” “GLENGARRY GLEN ROSS”), written by Doug Jung (screenwriting debut), and starring Edward Burns, Dustin Hoffman, Andy Garcia and Rachel Weisz.
The Festival will officially close Wednesday, April 16, at the Prince, with LAUREL CANYON, written and directed by Lisa Cholodenko (HIGH ART), and starring Frances McDormand, Christian Bale and Kate Beckinsale.
As part of the Closing Night ceremonies, festival officials and local celebrities will announce the winners of the second annual juried competition and Audience Awards. The festival itself will end Wednesday, April 17, with daylong screenings of “Festival Favorites.”
The Independence Seaport Museum will join the Prince Music Theater, the Ritz Five and the Ritz East as a Festival venue. Located on Penn’s Landing at Walnut Street (with ample parking and only a few hundred feet from the Ritz East), the Museum will host the Festival’s video presentations in its 500-seat auditorium/concert hall. Festival organizers are currently in negotiations for a state-of-the art fifth venue in West Philadelphia.
The year 2003 also marks the official name change from the Philadelphia Festival of World Cinema to the more streamlined, more inclusive and more engaging Philadelphia Film Festival. “There are many good reasons for this name change,” explained Film Society Board Chairman and Artistic
Director Raymond Murray. “First, the more general name reflects the broadening of our programming to include more major American and European films. Second, the shorter name strengthens the emphasis on Philadelphia. Third, it mirrors the names of other major film festivals, such as Toronto or Berlin. And fourth, most people have already been using that name, especially in other countries. This new name just makes sense.”
For more festival information, visit the Philadelphia Film Society website.

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