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George Clooney will open Dubai Fest with Michael Clayton

The Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF) today announced that the critically acclaimed thriller MICHAEL CLAYTON will open this year’s festival. Lead actor George Clooney (Oscar winner Syriana, Good Night and Good Luck, Ocean’s 11, 12 & 13) will attend the star-studded Opening Night Gala.

Tony Gilroy’s feature film debut draws from the political undertones of the Bourne series to tell the story of Michael Clayton, a corporate lawyer who is increasingly disillusioned with his life as a ‘fixer’ of unethical legal cases. Clooney plays the titular role, alongside co-stars Tilda Swinton (The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe) and Tom Wilkinson (Batman Begins, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind).

Abdulhamid Juma, Chairman of DIFF, welcomed the team behind MICHAEL CLAYTON at DIFF 2007 for the film’s Middle East premiere, saying: “We look forward to once again hosting Mr. Clooney in the Emirates. This year will see a greater interest in both DIFF and Dubai from the world’s filmmaking centres than ever before. Mr. Clooney’s return to the region means we have come full circle, from Dubai as a backdrop for the film ‘Syriana’ to DIFF as a platform to showcase his latest venture. We anticipate that future filmmakers who chose to work in this region will make the same return trip to the Emirates.”

DIFF’s Artistic Director of International Programming, Simon Field, commented on the choice of Michael Clayton as the opening film: “This conspiracy thriller will be an exciting and memorable way to start off DIFF 2007; the film will become part of film history alongside classic 1970’s dramas about ruthless corporations like The Parallax View. Not only is it filled with action, it is an immensely watchable character study; Clooney’s acting is superb, subtle, and different and more world-weary than we have seen from him before.”

The fourth edition of DIFF will run from 9-16 December. Principal Sponsors for this year’s Festival are Emirates, Dubai Duty Free, Jumeirah and Dubai Pearl.

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