Palm Springs Festival Sets Premieres, Anniversary Screenings

“Belle” and “Le Week-End” get gala slots; 25th anniversary screenings will include “Cinema Paradiso,” “Strictly Ballroom” and “The Lives of Others”

The 25th Palm Springs International Film Festival will open with the U.S. premiere of Amma Assante’s “Belle,” close with Roger Michell’s “Le Week-End” (pictured above) and include a special anniversary program of PSIFF favorites over the years, including Oscar winners “Cinema Paradiso,” “Departures,” “Life Is Beautiful,” “No Man’s Land” and “The Lives of Others.”

Organizers of the January festival, which takes place in the desert resort town 100 miles east of Los Angeles, announced the lineup of galas, premieres, past favorites and entries in the New Voices/New Visions section.

Also read: Palm Springs Fest Adds Canadian Films, 45 Foreign Oscar Contenders

The festival will open on Jan. 3 and close on Jan. 13, with 187 films from 60 countries screening over the 11 days. That number will include eight world premieres, 22 North American premieres and 47 U.S. premieres.

From the PSIFF press release:

Opening:  Belle (UK), Amma Assante. Stars Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Sarah Gadon, Tom Wilkinson, Emily Watson, Sam Reid, Tom Felton, Matthew Goode, Penelope Wilton and Miranda Richardson.
Closing: Le Week-End (UK), Roger Michell. Stars Jim Broadbent and Lindsay Duncan.

Above Dark Waters
(Finland) Director: Peter Franzén.  Cast: Olavi Angervo, Samuli Edelmann, Matleena Kuusniemi, Ismo Kallio, Marja Packalén. Peter Franzen.  US Premiere.
Bristel Goodman (USA)  Director: Dan Harnden.  Cast: John Golaszewski, Natalia Volkodaeva, Kate Gorney, Ezra Saint James, Lucas Van Engen, Jessica Myhr, Joe Varca.  World Premiere.
Class Enemy (Slovenia) Director: Rok Bicek.  Cast: Igor Samobor, Nataša Barbara Gracner, Tjaša Železnik, Maša Derganc, Robert Prebil, Voranc Boh, Jan Zupancic, Daša Cupevski.  North American Premiere.
Everything We Loved (New Zealand) Director: Max Currie.  Cast:      Brett Stewart, Sia Trokenheim, Ben Clarkson.  World Premiere.
Han Gong-ju (South Korea) Director: Lee Su-jin.  Cast: Chun Woo-hee, Jeong In-sun, Lee Young-ran, Kim So-young.  North America Premiere.
Left Foot Right Foot (Switzerland) Director: Germinal Roaux.  Cast: Nahuel Perez Biscayart, Agathe Schlencker, Mathilde Bisson, Dimitri Stapfer, Stanislas Merhar.  US Premiere.
Medeas (USA) Director: Andrea Pallaoro.  Cast: Catalina Sandino Moreno, Brian F. O’Byrne, Kevin Alejandro, Ian Nelson, Mary Mouser.  North America Premiere.
The Magnetic Tree (Spain) Director: Isabel de Ayguavives.  Cast: Andrés Gertrúdix, Catalina Saavedra, Manuela Martelli, Gonzalo Robles, Juan Pablo Larenas, Daniel Alcaíno, Edgardo Bruna.  North America Premiere.
Of Horses and Men (Iceland) Director: Benedikt Erlingsson.  Cast: Ingvar E. Sigurdsson, Steinn Armann Magnusson, Helgi Björnsson, Charlotte Bøving, Atli Rafn Sigurdarson, Halldora Geirhardsdottir, Kjartan Ragnarsson.  US Premiere.
Paris or Perish (France) Director: Reem Kherici.  Cast: Reem Kherici, Cécile Cassel, Shirley Bousquet, Tarek Boudali, Phillipe Lacheau, Salim Kechiouche, Stéphane Rousseau.  US Premiere.
Patch Town (Canada) Director: Craig Goodwill. Cast: Rob Ramsay, Zoie Palmer, Julian Richings, Suresh John, Scott Thompson, Ken Hall.  US Premiere.
Root (Chile) Director: Matías Rojas Valencia.  Cast: Mercedes Mujica, Elsa Poblete, Cristóbal Ruiz, Celia Uribe, Eugenio Morales.  North America Premiere.

World premieres include:
3 Nights in the Desert (USA) starring Amber Tamblyn, Wes Bentley and Vincent Piazza, Bristel Goodman (USA), Burkholder (USA), Days and Nights (USA) starring Katie Holmes, William Hurt, Jean Reno, Allison Janney, Ben Wishaw, Everything We Loved (New Zealand), Hidden Hills (USA), Lakshmi (India) and Party Central (USA) starring John Goodman, Charlie Day, Bill Crystal, Sean Hayes and David Foley.

North American premieres include: Catch the Dream (Denmark), Class Enemy (Slovenia), Grazing the Sky (Spain), Han Gong-ju (South Korea), Horses of God (Morocco), King Ordinary (Germany), Living is Easy with Eyes Closed (Spain), Magic Men (Israel), The Magnetic Tree (Spain), Medeas (USA), The Mercury Factor (Italy), Monk with a Camera (USA), Montage (South Korea), The Old Man (Kazakhstan), Open Up to Me (Finland), Rabbit Woman (Argentina), Root (Chile), The Searches (Mexico), Stalngrad (Russia), Tattoo (Brazil), Traffic Department (Poland) and Transit (Philippines).

U.S. premieres include: 15 Years and One Day (Spain), Above Dark Waters (Finland), Another House (Canada), The Auction (Canada), Bastardo (Tunisia), Belle (UK), Blind Dates (Georgia), The Butterfly’s Dream (Turkey), Cupcakes (Israel), Empire of Dirt (Canada), Enemy (Canada) directed by Denis Villeneuve and starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Mélanie Laurent, Isabella Rossellini, Faith Connections (India), For No Good Reason (UK) featuring Johnny Depp, Terry Gilliam, Richard E. Grant, Gaming Instinct (Germany), Gerontophilia (Canada) directed by Bruce LaBruce, The Grand Seduction (Canada) starring Brendan Gleeson and Taylor Kitsch, Heart of a Lion (Finland), Hotell (Sweden), Hunting Elephants (Israel), I Am Yours (Norway), Ignasi M. (Spain), In Secret (USA) starring Elizabeth Olsen, Oscar Isaac, Jessica Lange, The Italian Character (Germany), Left Foot Right Foot (Switzerland), Longwave (France), Love and Lemons (Sweden), Lovers (France), Marina (Belgium), The Mute (Peru), Nightingale (France), Of Horses and Men (Iceland), One of a Kind (France), Paris or Perish (France), Patch Town (Canada), A Place in Heaven (Israel), Roa (Colombia), Salvation Army (France), Standing Aside, Watching (Greece), Stay (Canada) starring Taylor Schilling, Aidan Quinn and Brian Gleeson, The Summer of Flying Fish (Chile), Tangerines (Estonia), Those Happy Years (Italy), The Venice Syndrome (Germany), White Lies (New Zealand), Words and Pictures (USA) directed by Fred Schepisi starring Clive Owen and Juliette Binoche, Young & Beautiful (France) directed by François Ozon and Yozgat Blues (Turkey).

Cinema Paradiso
(Italy) Director: Giuseppe Tornatore.
Departures (Japan) Director: Yôjirô Takita
Life is Beautiful (Italy) Director: Roberto Benigni
No Man’s Land (Bosnia and Herzegovina) Director: Danis Tanovic
Strictly Ballroom (Australia) Director: Baz Luhrmann
The Lives of Others (Germany) Director: Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck
The Sea Inside (Spain) Director: Alejandro Amenábar

Other Festival films with notable talent and directors include: Age of Uprising: The Legend of Michael Kohlhaas (France) starring Mads Mikkelsen, Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa (UK) starring Steve Coogan and Colm Meaney, Le Chef (France) starring Jean Reno, Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me (USA) featuring Elaine Stritch, Tina Fey, Alec Baldwin, Nathan Lane, The Galapagos Affair: Satan Came to Eden (USA) featuring the voices of Cate Blanchett, Diana Kruger and Josh Radnor, The Invisible Woman (UK) directed by and starring Ralph Fiennes, Mystery Road (Australia) starring Aaron Pedersen, Hugo Weaving and Ryan Kwanten, Reaching for the Moon (Brazil) starring Miranda Otto, Tim’s Vermeer (USA) directed by Teller and featuring Penn Jilette, Two Lives (Germany) starring Liv Ullman, Unforgiven (Japan) starring Ken Watanabe, Walking with the Enemy (USA) starring Ben Kingsley.