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By Film Threat Staff | October 11, 2001

The 24th Denver International Film Festival takes place Oct. 11 – 21, 2001, and will showcase more than 140 films from all over the world. Included in the festival are international features, independently produced fiction films and documentaries, animation, experimental works, children’s programs and short films.
This year’s festival will include a special focus on Latino cinema this year and will host gala opening and closing night parties, various receptions and seminars. Films also will be screened at the University of Colorado at Boulder campus the evenings of Oct. 17 – 21.
Peter Bogdanovich and Richard Linklater will receive directors’ awards, and actress Debra Winger will be hosted at the Starz Encore 24th Denver International Film Festival presented by New Deal Pictures, which opens Oct. 11 with the screening of LANTANA by Ray Lawrence. This year’s festival, expanded from 10 days to 11, will showcase 160 films from around the world, including six world premieres, six North American premieres and nine U.S. premieres.
“Film, like all great art, has the capacity to humanize, to nurture, to heal,” said festival director Ron Henderson. “At this somber time, we offer a representative sampling of the best of world cinema, with more than 150 voices of film artists from 35 different countries. We hope that these films can help our audience learn more about other cultures and create bridges of international understanding.”
Bogdanovich (THE LAST PICTURE SHOW, WHAT’S UP DOC?, PAPER MOON, MASK) will receive the Mayor’s Lifetime Achievement Award on Oct. 21, following the closing night presentation of his new film, THE CAT’S MEOW, at 7 p.m. at the Continental Theatre. Rocky Mountain News film critic Robert Denerstein will interview Bogdanovich on stage after the screening. Starring Kirsten Dunst, Edward Herrman, Jennifer Tilly, Eddie Izzard and Cary Elwes, THE CAT’S MEOW portrays a murder on William Randolph Hearts’ yacht. Aboard are his mistress, Marion (Dunst), gossip columnist Louella Parsons, Charlie Chaplin and others. The Last Reel Party follows at Il Fornaio restaurant.
The festival will present the John Cassavetes Award to Linklater (SLACKERS, DAZED AND CONFUSED, BEFORE SUNRISE) for his innovative techniques in filmmaking technology. The award will be given following the Oct. 21 screening of Linklater’s WAKING LIFE, a vividly colored animation that engages the lead character in whimsical dialogues about topics ranging from dreaming to the meaning of life. The festival also will screen Linklater’s other new film, TAPE, which stars Uma Thurman, Ethan Hawke and Robert Sean Leonard and uses digital video to create a moving, provocative drama. Past Cassavetes award recipients include Sean Penn, Charles Burnett, Hal Hartley, Jim Jarmusch, Errol Morris, Alan Rudolph, John Sayles, Steven Soderberg, Robert M. Young and Barbara Kopple.
Winger will appear in person following the screening of BIG BAD LOVE at 7 p.m. Oct. 19.
An expected crowd-pleaser, LIFE AS A HOUSE is the festival’s film-and-reception “Centerpiece” event at the Buell Theatre at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 13. A humorous story about a man facing his own mortality and determined to be a decent father, the film will be introduced by Denver Post film critic Steve Rosen and stars Kevin Kline, Kristin Scott Thomas, Mary Steenburgen and Sam Robards.
Two other films will be gala screenings: THE BUSINESS OF STRANGERS, with Stockard Channing and Julia Stiles, and THE MAN WHO WASN’T THERE, by Joel and Ethan Coen.
The festival also selected documentary maker Albert Maysles for a tribute this year and will screen three of his films: GREY GARDENS, GIMME SHELTER and LALEE’S KIN: THE LEGACY OF COTTON. University of Colorado film professor and festival guest curator Stan Brakhage will introduce the screening of MARK TWAIN, a work-in-progress documentary by Ken Burns. Brakhage also will introduce three films by director Terrence Malick: THE THIN RED LINE, BADLANDS and DAYS OF HEAVEN.
More than 70 directors and actors are expected to attend the festival, giving audience members an opportunity to talk with filmmakers following screenings of their films. The festival presents the Mayor’s Lifetime Achievement Award and other filmmaker tributes. This year’s films were selected from more than 900 entries.
Most screenings are at the Starz Encore Film Center at the Tivoli, Auraria Parkway and 9th Avenue in Denver. Most screenings are $8 for the public, with discounted prices for Denver Film Society members, seniors, students, members of the Colorado Film and Video Association and Association of Independent Video and Filmmakers as well as groups of 10 or more.
For more info including a full schedule, call the festival hotline at 303-893-3456 or visit the official Denver International Film Festival web site.
Check out’s FILM FESTIVAL ARCHIVES for more fest news!

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