Berlin Film Festival unveils 2011 line-up (Roundup)
By Andrew McCathie Jan 18, 2011, 17:18 GMT
Berlin - European cinema is to take centre stage at next month's Berlin Film Festival, according to the programme announced by Berlinale organizers on Tuesday.
About half the total of 22 films to be screened in the festival's main competition are from European directors.
Now in its 61st year, the festival is also expecting a large contingent of top stars to walk its famed red carpet, including Matt Damon, Jeff Bridges, Vanessa Redgrave, Demi Moore and Ralph Fiennes.
Among the line-up of films in the race for the Berlinale's coveted Golden Bear is German director Ulrich Schlafkrankheit's Sleeping Sickness, about two Western expatriates working in Africa.
Yasemin Samdereli's debut feature film Almanya - Willkommen in Deutschland, a comedy about a Turkish guest worker in Germany at the end of the 1960s, is to have its world premiere in Berlin.
Samdereli was born in the west German city of Dortmund and has a Turkish family background.
This year's Berlinale also picks up on the current wave of interest in 3-D movie going.
French director Michel Ocelot's animated Les contes de la nuit (Tales Of The Night) is also to have to its world premiere in Berlin.
The festival has already announced that German filmmaker Wim Wenders will return to the Berlinale with Pina, a 3-D tribute to Germany's modern dance legend Pina Bausch, who died last year.
The standard bearers for Eastern European cinema include the world premiere of A Torinoi Lo (The Turin Horse) from legendary Hungarian director Bela Tarr.
Russian director Alexander Mindadze's drama V Subbotu (Innocent Saturday) is also in the race for top honours in Berlin. Mindadze's film will also have its world premiere at the festival.
Saranghanda, Saranghaji Anneunda (Come Rain Come Shine), from South Korean director Lee Yoon-ki, is the only Asian movie that has so far been included in the main competition.
The movie stars Lim Soo-jung and Hyan Bin and is among the 16 in the main competition that are also having world premieres at the festival.
Considered one of the world's top film festivals, the Berlinale opens on February 10 with a remake of the 1960s western classic True Grit by Oscar-winning US directors Joel and Ethan Coen.
True Grit this month shot to the top of the US box office after opening before Christmas.
Starring Oscar winners Jeff Bridges and Matt Damon as well as Josh Brolin, True Grit will also bring a touch of Hollywood allure to the festival.
The rather large bunch of US filmmakers expected at this year's festival will help to raise the glamour stakes in Berlin. This includes JC Chandor's debut film Margin Call, which is a thriller set in an investment bank in the early days of the financial crisis.
Margin Call stars Kevin Spacey, Jeremy Irons, Demi Moore, Paul Bettany and Zach Quinto. The Berlinale marks its international premiere.
Also likely to be spotted on the festival's red carpet are Liam Neeson, Diane Kruger, Aidan Quinn and Bruno Ganz, who star in Spanish-born director Jaume Collet-Serra's Unknown.
The film, which is have to its international premiere at the festival, is about a man who awakens after a car accident to discover another man has assumed his identity.
Iranian director Asghar Farhadi returns to the festival for the international premiere of his latest movie Jodaeiye Nader az Simin (Nader And Simin, A Separation).
Two years ago Farhadi won a Silver Bear in Berlin for best director for his movie About Elly.
As a sign of solidarity with jailed Iranian filmmaker Jafar Panahi, the Berlinale is to screen several of his movies.
Representing Latin America is Argentinian director Rodrigo Moreno's Un Mundo Misterioso (A Mysterious World) and the world premiere of El Premio (The Prize) from Argentinian-based Paula Markovitch.
Moreno's film tells the story of a couple in their 30s who try to live apart, while El Premio is about the problems that a Mexican family faces in the 1970s after their daughter writes a critical story about the country's army.
The festival has also included in the main competition films from Turkey, Israel and Britain.
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