Oscar Nominees, ‘Spider-Man’ Co-stars at Palm Springs Shorts Fest

Long-running festival to screen 314 films, award $90,000 in prizes

James Franco, Kirsten Dunst and Glenn Close are among the filmmakers whose shorts will be screened at the 2010 Palm Springs International ShortFest, which runs from June 22 through June 28 at the Camelot Theatres in the California desert resort.

Franco’s “The Clerk’s Tale” (photo below) and Dunst’s “Bastard” will be shown as part of a lineup of 314 shorts, including 58 world premieres, 55 North American premieres and 24 U.S. premieres.

Actress Glenn Close’s short film “Pax” will also screen, while other films will feature actors including Meryl Streep, Jesse Eisenberg, Helena Bonham-Carter, Isabella Rossellini, Brian Geraghty and Ian McKellen.

The Clerk's TaleThe films will be organized into 52 different programs, with themes including “Love Gone Bad,” “Idiot’s Delight,” “You Don’t Have to Be Jewish” and “Philosophy 101.”

Films will include “The New Tenants,” which won the Academy Award for Best Live-Action Short in March, and “Rabbit a la Berlin," which was nominated for Best Documentary Short at the same Oscars.

One program will screen shorts that have recently won awards or nominations at South by Southwest, the San Francisco International Film Festival, the Berlin Film Festival and the International Documentary Film Association festival.

The ShortsFest, now in its 16th year, will also include a variety of panels and discussions, including an onstage conversation between actor-director James Franco and Variety editor Peter Bart.

A Palm Springs jury will award $14,000 in cash awards and more than $75,000 in equipment and production prizes, while winners in four categories will be eligible for the shorts categories at the 2010 Academy Awards.

The complete list of films and programs is available at www.psfilmfest.org.

In other shorts news, the HollyShorts Film Festival announced last week that actor David Arquette’s 3D short “The Butler’s in Love” will open the fest on Aug. 5 at the Directors Guild of America theater.

HollyShorts will run through Aug. 12 at locations in Hollywood and West Hollywood.

“The Butler’s in Love,” directed by Arquette, features Thomas Jane and Elizabeth Berkley and is based on an “absinthe era” painting by Mark Stock. Information is available at www.hollyshorts.com.