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Seattle International Film Festival claims largest festival in the US reveals line up of 600 screenings

SIFF is proud to announce the lineup for the 36th Seattle International Film Festival, the largest and most highly attended event of its kind in the United States. Running a full 25 days, SIFF will present 189 narrative features, 54 documentary features, 13 archival films, and 150 short films from 67 countries, including 25 World Premieres (12 features, 13 shorts), 36 North American Premieres (24 features, 12 shorts), and 12 US Premieres (6 features, 6 shorts). SIFF 2010 runs from May 20 through June 13 at 11 venues throughout Seattle, as well as venues in Kirkland and Everett.
The Festival will open on May 20 at the beautiful Benaroya Hall with the sophisticated comedy The Extra Man, starring Paul Dano (There Will be Blood) as the ever-so-proper Louis Ives, a lonely dreamer who imagines himself the protagonist of a modern F. Scott Fitzgerald novel, and Kevin Kline as playwright Henry Harrison, a wildly eccentric social entrepreneur who takes Ives under his wing. Directed by the Academy Award®-nominated team of Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcini (American Splendor),  

The Extra Man is a magical, multi-dimensional comedy that is perfect to kick off this year's dynamic Festival. The film also stars Katie Holmes, John C. Reilly, and Alicia Goranson. A celebratory party will follow the film, featuring live entertainment, complimentary cocktails, hors d'oeuvres, and desserts. Co-directors Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcini, along with members of the cast, are expected to attend the Red Carpet Gala.
The Closing Night Gala will feature Aaron Schneider's Get Low. For years, townsfolk have been terrified of backwoods recluse Felix Bush (Robert Duvall). When Bush rides into town with a shotgun and wad of cash wanting to arrange his own "living funeral," what follows is an audaciously engrossing and slyly funny folk tale of forgiveness and redemption. Also staring Bill Murray, Sissy Spacek, and Lucas Black, Get Low is a timeless story of mystery and discovery. Closing Night Gala takes place on Sunday, June 13, at the Pacific Place Cinemas at 6:30pm, followed by a celebration at the elegant Pan Pacific Hotel.
SIFF will honor actor Edward Norton for his exceptional and prolific film career. The Festival will present the 2010 Golden Space Needle for Outstanding Achievement in Acting to Norton at a Special Tribute Event on Friday, June 4th, at 7:30pm at the Egyptian Theatre. The tribute event will include the west coast premiere of his new film Leaves of Grass (Dir. Tim Blake Nelson, USA, 2010), followed by a special award presentation and on-stage interview with clips highlighting his diverse work as an award-winning actor. The film follows a twisting path merging crime drama and drug comedy in pursuit of answering one of our oldest questions: What does it truly mean to be happy? The stellar cast also includes: Keri Russell, Tim Blake Nelson, Melanie Lynskey, Richard Dreyfuss and Susan Sarandon. Early Norton films, including American History X (1998), Fight Club (1999), and 25th Hour (2002), will also be presented at special late night screenings during the Festival.
The Centerpiece Gala will feature Farewell, the acclaimed new film from French director Christian Carion (director of the Academy Award®-nominated hit Joyeux Noël).  Farewell is an absorbing true story about a KGB colonel who gives top-secret documents to an ordinary French businessman working in Russia, helping to hasten the end of the Cold War. Centerpiece Gala takes place Saturday, May 29, at the Egyptian Theatre at 6:30pm, followed by a rousing celebration at the Daughters of the Revolution (DAR) Hall on Seattle's Capitol Hill.
The Festival is pleased to announce Ambiente: New Spanish Cinema, a special spotlight focus on the films of Spain, with an incredible selection of 18 feature films, nine shorts, and three co-productions from the country, including four North American Premieres. Spain is enjoying an enthusiastic independent film revival, producing some of the most interesting work currently being made and seen at festivals world-wide. Selections include many recent award winners, including: Agora (Goya Award, Best Cinematography), Cell 211 (Goya Award, Best Film, Director, Actor, and Adapted Screenplay), The Damned (FIPRESCI Award), Garbo: The Spy (Goya Award, Best Documentary Film), Gordos (Goya Award, Best Supporting Actor), Me Too (Goya Award, Best Actress, Original Song; Rotterdam Film Festival 2010 Audience Award; San Sebastian Film Festival, Best Actor, Best Actress), The Dancer and the Thief (Official Academy Awards® Submission for Best Foreign Language Film), Three Days With the Family (Goya Award, Best New Director), and Woman Without Piano (San Sebastian Film Festival, Best Director). SIFF is pleased to share this work with Seattle audiences and to celebrate this energetic filmmaking culture.  
This year sees the return of SIFF's fabulous Saturday parties taking place on each of the four Saturdays of the Festival. The New American Cinema Party kicks it off on May 22 at Pacific Place Cinemas at 7:30pm with Cyrus, the latest comedy from iconoclastic filmmaking brothers, Jay and Mark Duplass, followed by a party at Pacific Place's lavish Seven Salon. SIFF Centerpiece Gala, featuring Christian Carion's Farewell, follows on May 29, with Centerpiece Gala Party at DAR Hall. On June 5, at the Neptune Theatre at 7:00pm, the Festival celebrates Ambiente: New Spanish Cinema with the presentation of the thriller Cell 211, this year's big-winner at the Goya Awards, with post-screening festivities at the delicious Taberna del Alabardero in Belltown. On the final Saturday, June 12, SIFF and the W Hotel host a special film Industry Party at the plush W Hotel in downtown Seattle. 
SIFF 2010 Special Presentations includes three larger-than-life productions: Cane Toads: The Conquest-in 3D, exploring one of Australia's greatest environmental catastrophes in glorious 3D; The Wildest Dream-in IMAX, the story of George Mallory-the first man to attempt a summit of Mount Everest-and Conrad Anker, the mountaineer who finds Mallory's frozen remains 75 years later; and The Grease Sing-along, in which a newly restored print brings the highest-grossing musical of all time to the big screen as a sing-along. SIFF presents two very special documentary programs, Waiting for Superman (2010 Sundance Audience Award-winner) from Academy Award®-winning documentarian Davis Guggenheim about America's education crisis; and Utopia in Four Movements, in which Academy Award nominated documentarian Sam Green and sound artist Dave Cerf investigate the meaning and status of idealism in contemporary culture in a "live documentary," presented in a unique format that ensures no performance is ever exactly the same. SIFF 2010 will also host Special Presentation screenings of Jackie Chan's North American Premiere of Little Big Soldier; and the Allen Ginsberg biopic, Howl, starring James Franco as the poet laureate of the Beat generation. Additionally, SIFF is pleased to present the sparkling comedy Violet Tendencies for the annual Gay-La Extravaganza, taking place June 4 at the Egyptian Theatre, followed by an after party at Re-bar.
SIFF Archival Presentations brings 12 rare and recently restored classic archival films back to the silver screen, including a Special Archival Presentation of the rare Chinese silent comedy of manners A Spray of Plum Blossoms (1931), featuring an original composition performed live by pianist Donald Sosin. In honor of the Film Foundation's 20th Anniversary, SIFF proudly presents four recently restored masterpieces from their extensive collection including: John Ford's Drums Along the Mohawk (1939); Jean Renoir's The River (1951); Luchino Visconti's masterpiece of passion and betrayal, Senso (1954); and John Cassavetes' knockout directorial debut, Shadows.  As part of Seattle Celebrates Bernstein, SIFF will present three films featuring award-winning Leonard Bernstein compositions, including the dazzling classic West Side Story (1961); Academy Award®-winning On the Town; and Elia Kazan's eight-time Academy Award®-winning New Jersey mob film, On the Waterfront. SIFF Archival Presentations also features two rare restorations from Polish director Jerzy Kawalerowicz, including the Hitchcockian thriller Night Train (1959), and Mother Joan of the Angels, 1961's winner of the Special Jury Award at Cannes, as well as Henri-Georges Clouzot's Inferno, the riveting account of one of the greatest films never made, featuring incredible footage that has been locked away for more than 40 years.  

Never forgetting its roots in the fertile Pacific Northwest film community, SIFF's Northwest Connections program is a proud display of hometown talent. This year's Northwest Connections includes five World Premieres and features local director Linas Phillips' latest work, Bass Ackwards; the psychological thriller The Penitent Man(shot in several Puget Sound locations); Senior Prom, a "mockumentary" directed by a senior at Mountlake Terrace High School; Perfect 10, by Seattle-area husband-and-wife directing team Kris and Lindy Boustedt; Wheedle's Groove, a look back at Seattle's nearly forgotten contributions to the soul music scene; and documentaries about renowned locals including glass artist, Dale Chihuly, outspoken former Washington State Governor, Booth Gardner (in an Academy Award® nominated film), and the tenacious artistic revolutionary, Ginny Ruffner.
Each year, SIFF selects three up-and-coming directors that are destined to leave an impressive mark on cinema. These directors are SIFF's Emerging Masters. This year's Emerging Master honorees bring very distinct worldviews to the screen-on life, war, politics, sexuality, and the fragile emotional bonds of family. Mohamed Al-Daradji (Iraq) exquisitely crafts both hardnosed and humanistic tales of the Iraqi people during the ongoing war (Ahlaam, Son of Babylon). Valery Todorovsky (Russia) explores the jubilantly defiant artist and original "hipsters" during Soviet rule with a colorful and energetic musical and the empowering uncertainty of those caught in its last gasping breaths (Land of the Deaf, Hipsters). Ana Kokkinos (Australia) forces us to confront society's often sheltered and shunned issues with our upbringings in vividly condensed and clamoring time capsules (Head On, Blessed).
SIFF 2010 Juried Competition sections include the New Directors Showcase Competition, featuring 12 films remarkable for their original concept, striking style, and overall excellence by first or second-time directors; the Documentary Competition, nine documentaries sure to stimulate your senses, emotions, and, most of all, your imagination; and the Shorts Competition in three categories-Live Action, Animation, and Documentary. SIFF is one of three festivals in the United States to host a FIPRESCI jury and is proud of this ongoing partnership. This year, the FIPRESCI jury will present an award in the New American Cinema category from 14 selections that distinctly reveal and reflect the intricate weave of the American cultural web.
SIFF's Face the Music program pulsates through the incredible musical genres of reggae and ska, gospel and soul, classical, punk, Brazilian bossa nova and baile funk, and country. Face the Music 2010 features eight documentaries and two live music events, including Seattle roots rock band The Maldives performing an original live score to action-packed silent Western Riders of the Purple Sage (1925) at the Triple Door on May 25; and The Magnetic Fields' Stephin Merritt performing an original live score to 1916's gorgeous silent adaptation of Jules Vern's 1869 novel 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea at the Paramount Theatre on June 9. Joining him will be organist David Hegarty and frequent Merritt collaborator and author Daniel Handler (a.k.a. Lemony Snicket) on the accordion.
The festival-within-the-Festival-SIFF ShortsFest Weekend-a showcase of the world's best short film, takes place during opening weekend, May 21-23, at SIFF Cinema and the Egyptian Theatre. SIFF 2010 presents 14 short film packages and shorts before features that include 150 short films, including 31 World Premieres, ranging from animation to documentary. Winners of Best Narrative short film and Best Animation short film awards can qualify to enter the Short Films category of the Academy Awards®.
Celebrating the connection between youth and film, SIFF 2010 FutureWave: Expanding Cinema Through Education is a multifaceted program that features short films created by youth; nine teen-oriented feature films from six countries to screen throughout the Festival; workshop opportunities; a special collaboration with Adobe Youth Voices; classroom visits and Festival field trips; and the fifth annual SuperFly Filmmaking Workshop in partnership with Longhouse Media. This year's SuperFly Filmmaking Challenge, taking place at the Lummi Nation, will utilize an original script crafted by Peter Bratt, an award-winning director recently honored for his artistic genius with a 2000 Rockefeller Foundation Film/Video/Multimedia Fellowship. For the second year in a row, a jury of five high-school students will judge the nine teen-focused features and select the Youth Jury Award for Best FutureWave Feature.
SIFF is pleased to announce the return of incredible Festival programs including Alternate Cinema, a showcase of adventurous films that take you beyond narrative; Midnight Adrenaline, for the brave and willing; Talking Pictures, offering an engaging, provocative, and entertaining post-screening forum with special Festival guests and local celebrities; Films4Families, a celebration of the whole family coming together to share the movie-going experience; and of course SIFF's longstanding Secret Festival, about which we can't tell you any more. 
The Festival makes it easier than ever to seek and find films through the use of SIFFter and iSIFF for the iPhone. Available at and on the iPhone, SIFFter is an easy-to-use visual search tool that will help audiences sift through the more than 400 films and narrow down choices based on preferences including genre, country, time of day, and other filters. Through iSiFF for the iPhone, you can find films, view trailers, buy tickets, and interact with SIFF on Facebook and Twitter. Free download available at the iTunes App Store. 
The Festival doesn't have to stop just because the theaters are closed. SIFFtv is the source for all video content captured at the Festival from parties to filmmaker interviews and Q&A sessions, available online at
World Premiere
Amplified Seattle, directed by John Jeffcoat (USA, 2010)
Chihuly Fire & Light, directed by Mark McDonnell (USA, 2010)
I Kissed a Vampire, directed by Chris Sean Nolan (USA, 2010)
A Little Help, directed by Michael J. Weithorn (USA, 2010)
Miss Nobody, directed by Tim Cox (USA, 2010)
Morning, directed by Joseph Mitacek (USA, 2010)
Patagonia, directed by Marc Evans (United Kingdom, 2010)
Perfect 10, directed by Lindy Boustedt (USA, 2010)
REGENERATION, directed by Phillip Montgomery (USA, 2010)
Senior Prom, directed by Nicholas Terry (USA, 2010)
The Family Tree, directed by Vivi Friedman (USA, 2010)
The Untitled Ginny Ruffner Project, directed by Karen Stanton (USA, 2010)
North American Premiere
Blood Relation, directed by Noa Ben-Hagai (Israel, 2009)
Born to Suffer, directed by Miguel Albaladejo (Spain, 2010)
Bus Palladium, directed by Christopher Thompson (France, 2010)
The Children of Diyarbakir, directed by Miraz Bezar (Turkey, 2009)
Come Undone, directed by Silvio Soldini (Italy, 2010)
Crossing Hennessy, directed by Ivy Ho (Hong Kong, 2010)
Drifting, directed by Ventura Pons (Spain, 2010)
Farsan, directed by Josef Fares (Sweden, 2010)
Father's Acre, directed by Viktor Oszkar Nagy (Hungary, 2009)
For the Good of Others, directed by Óskar Santos (Spain, 2010)
From Beginning to End, directed by Aluizio Abranches (Brazil, 2010)
I Am, directed by Igor Voloshin (Russia, 2009)
Imani, directed by Caroline Kamya (Uganda, 2009)
Little Big Soldier, directed by Ding Sheng (Hong Kong, 2010)
Love in a Puff, directed by Pang Ho-Cheung (Hong Kong, 2010)
Paris Return, directed by Yossi Aviram (Israel, 2009)
Plug & Pray, directed by Jens Schanze (Germany, 2009)
The Robber, directed by Benjamin Heisenberg (Austria, 2009)
Room in Rome, directed by Julio Medem (Spain, 2010)
Run If You Can, directed by Dietrich  Brüggemann (Germany, 2010)
Turn It Loose, directed by Alastair Siddons (United Kingdom, 2009)
Twisted Roots, directed by Saara  Saarela (Finland, 2009)
The Wedding Cake, directed by Denys Granier-Deferre (France, 2010)
White Lion, directed by Michael Swan (South Africa, 2009)
US Premiere
At the End of Daybreak, directed by Ho Yuhang (Malaysia, 2009)
Diamond 13, directed by Gilles Béat (France, 2009)
Gravity, directed by Maximilian Erlenwein (Germany, 2009)
Henry of Navarre, directed by Jo Baier (Germany, 2009)
I Miss You, directed by Fabián Hofman (Mexico, 2009)
Leaving, directed by Catherine Corsini (France, 2009)
SIFF Competitions
Winners of each feature film competition receive $2,500. Short Film Competition winners will receive $1,000 in three categories-Live Action, Animation, and Documentary. Winners for Best Narrative short film and Best Animation short film at SIFF may qualify to enter the Short Films category of the Academy Awards®.  The WaveMaker Award for Excellence in Youth Filmmaking will be presented to one young filmmaker from the FutureWave program, as chosen by five high school students. 
New Directors Showcase
Angel at Sea, directed by Frédéric Dumont (Belgium, 2009)
Between Two Worlds, directed by Vimukthi Jayasundara (Sri Lanka, 2009)
Cargo, directed by Ivan Engler (Switzerland, 2009)
Crossing Hennessy, directed by Ivy Ho (Hong Kong, 2010) NORTH AMERICAN PREMIERE
Every Day is a Holiday, directed by Dima El Horr (Lebanon, 2009)
Father's Acre, directed by Viktor Oszkar Nagy (Hungary, 2009) NORTH AMERICAN PREMIERE
Gravity, directed by Maximilian Erlenwein (Germany, 2009) US PREMIERE
I Am, directed by Igor Voloshin (Russia, 2009) NORTH AMERICAN PREMIERE
The Reverse, directed by Borys Lankosz (Poland, 2009)
The Sentimental Engine Slayer, directed by Omar Rodriguez Lopez (USA, 2010)
Three Days With the Family, directed by Mar Coll (Spain, 2009)
Turistas, directed by Alicia Scherson (Chile, 2009)
Documentary Competition
American: The Bill Hicks Story, directed by Matt Harlock (United Kingdom, 2009)
Blood Relation, directed by Noa Ben Hagai (Israel, 2009) NORTH AMERICAN PREMIERE
Garbo: The Spy, directed by Edmon Roch (Spain, 2009)
Marwencol, directed by Jeff Malmberg (USA, 2010)
Paris Return, directed by Yossi Aviram (Israel, 2009) NORTH AMERICAN PREMIERE
Plug & Pray, directed by Jens Schanze (Germany, 2009) NORTH AMERICAN PREMIERE
Queen of the Sun, directed by Taggart Siegel (USA, 2010)
Rouge Ciel, directed by Bruno Decharme (France, 2009)
This Way of Life, directed by Tom Burstyn (New Zealand, 2009)
Short Film Competition
In addition to titles paired with feature films, the short film competition will present 14 themed programs that will be screened as part of the SIFF ShortsFest Weekend, May 21-23. Juried awards will be given to short films in the categories of narrative, animation, and documentary.
SIFF is very pleased to continue to partner with FIPRESCI, the International Federation of Film Critics, to jury the New American Cinema competition. SIFF is one of three festivals in the United States to host a FIPRESCI jury and award a FIPRESCI prize as part of our New American Cinema program. FIPRESCI, in existence for more than 65 years, with members in over 60 countries, supports cinema as an art and as an outstanding and autonomous means of expression.
New American Cinema
Bilal's Stand, directed by Sultan Sharrief (USA, 2009)
Cherry, directed by Jeffrey Fine (USA, 2010)
The Dry Land, directed by Ryan Piers Williams (USA, 2009)
Every Day, directed by Richard Levine (USA, 2010)
The Family Tree, directed by Vivi Friedman (USA, 2010) WORLD PREMIERE
The Freebie, directed by Katie Aselton (USA, 2009)
I Kissed a Vampire, directed by Chris Sean Nolan (USA, 2010) WORLD PREMIERE
A Little Help, directed by Michael J. Weithorn (USA, 2009) WORLD PREMIERE
Meet Monica Velour, directed by Keith Bearden (USA, 2010)
Miss Nobody, directed by Tim Cox (USA, 2010) WORLD PREMIERE
Monogamy, directed by Dana Adam Shapiro (USA, 2010)
Night Catches Us, directed by Tanya Hamilton (USA, 2010)
Skateland, directed by Anthony Burns (USA, 2009)
Some Days Are Better Than Others, directed by Matt McCormick (USA, 2010)
About the Seattle International Film Festival
The 36th Seattle International Film Festival runs May 20 through June 13. The complete SIFF program schedule will be available Thursday, May 6, at, as a special pullout grid in the May 6 edition of the Seattle Times, and as a free SIFF Guide distributed widely throughout the city. The SIFF Box Office opens to SIFF Members May 6, and to the general public on May 7. Tickets will be available online at, by phone at 206-324-9996, or at the Pacific Place Box Office (600 Pine Street, second level). Members of the press can find and download more information, including press kits, photos, press releases, and full film descriptions at

Now in its 36th year, the Seattle International Film Festival is the largest and most highly-attended film festival in the United States, showcasing more than 400 films from over 60 countries to an audience of 150,000 attendees annually. Listed by Variety as one of the world's "50 unmissable film festivals," SIFF continues to be recognized as one of the top festivals in North America. SIFF combines the best aspects of a casual film marketplace with our well-established reputation as a great audience festival filmmakers love to attend.

SIFF's mission is to create experiences that bring people together to discover extraordinary films from around the world. In addition to the Festival, SIFF operates SIFF Cinema, its year-round flagship theater at McCaw Hall. In 2011, SIFF will open the SIFF Film Center at Seattle Center's Alki Room, thereby fulfilling its long-standing vision of creating a permanent home where SIFF's successful film, education, and community outreach programs can thrive.

The 36th Seattle International Film Festival is made possible in part by support from Comcast, The Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, Brotherton Cadillac Buick GMC, Alaska Airlines, Don Q Rums, The Wallace Foundation, Wong Doody, American Airlines, Modern Digital, POP, and City Arts Magazine.

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