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Kinomania drops 90 films in a month of festival weather

Date: 01.11.2008

Get your movie-spectacles ready, because it's time for Kinomania to start. Bulgaria's 22nd annual international autumnal cinema festival takes places in Sofia and Plovdiv from November 7 to December 3 2008.

Countries whose cinema will be featured this year are France, Great Britain, Italy, the United States and Russia, this latter taking place as part of the Year of Russia in Bulgaria. There will also be special programmes dedicated to Asian, documentary, animation and tango films.

At a news conference held at Matti'D in the Lumière complex behind NDK (National Palace of Culture) on October 29, it was announced that the official opening of the festival would highlight American independent film cinema with a projection of Shine a Light, a documentary by Martin Scorsese (2008) about the Rolling Stones. The new American ambassador Nancy McEldowney is expected to open the evening, as did French ambassador Etienne de Poncins in 2007.

Addressing attendees of the press conference in Bulgarian, Katherine Ingmanson, counsellor for press and culture at the US embassy in Bulgaria, said that the films selected for the American movie panorama showed an overarching theme of a search for personal identity, particularly notable in the lives of young people in America.

Films to be screened include Grace is Gone (James C Strouse, 2007, 92'), Frozen River (Courtney Hunt, 2008, 96'), Towelhead (Allen Ball, 2007, 128') and The Princess of Nebraska (Wayne Wang, 2007, 77').

The Russian focus will show 10 Russian films from 2007 and 2008, and will see the presence of various Russian actors and producers over the course of Kinomania.

As to French participation, the pride of this year's Kinomania is that the winner of the Palme d'Or at the 2008 Festival de Cannes will be screened – Entre les murs, by Laurent Cantet, which tells the story of a teacher in a racially mixed French high school. It will be shown on November 21 at 6.30pm at Dom na Kinoto, and on November 23 at 6.30pm at Lumière Cinema.

The six British films taking part in the film festival demonstrate the British spirit of co-productions, Lyubov Kostova, projects and partnerships head at the British Council, said, with four of them being produced jointly with other countries, such as Brideshead Revisited or Becoming Jane (both directed by Julian Jarrold).

From the Bulgarian side, Andrei Slabakov's most recent film Hindemith will be screened, and, elsewhere, Yordanka Hristova and two Cuban musicians will give a concert on November 21 to accompany the documentary in which she acts – Como fue.

Films will be shown at the Sofia movie halls Lumière, Dom na Kinoto, Odeon, Euro-Bulgarian Cinema and hall 1 of NDK, and in Plovdiv at Lucky Cinema. All films have Bulgarian and English subtitles.


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