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New York Film Festival To Celebrate 45th Anniversary

No Country For Old MenNo Country For Old Men

Wednesday, July 18-------The New York Film Festival, one of the pre-eminent film events in North America, celebrates its 45th anniversary this year. The event, which will run from September 28 to October 14, has begun to announce some of its programming and special events, tantalizing New York film lovers with some gems to look forward to. The Film Society of Lincoln Center, which presents the Festival along with its yearlong programming at the flagship Walter Reade Theater, has announced that Wes Anderson’s film THE DARJEELING LIMITED will open the Festival, and Joel and Ethan Coen’s  NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN will be honored as the festival’s Centerpiece. Two other notable titles in this year’s festival slate are also confirmed: Cannes Film Festival Palme d’Or winner 4 MONTHS, 3 WEEKS AND 23 DAYS, by Romanian director Cristian Mungiu; and LEE Chang-dong’s Korean feature, SECRET SUNSHINE, which stars Cannes ’ Best Actress recipient, JEON Do-yeon.

Anderson ’s THE DARJEELING LIMITED stars Owen Wilson, Adrien Brody and Jason Schwartzman in an emotional comedy about three brothers re-forging family bonds on a train ride across the vibrant and sensual landscape of India . Anjelica Huston is also featured in the film, co-written by Anderson, Roman Coppola and Schwartzman.  The film will open the Festival at Lincoln Center's Avery Fisher Hall on Friday, September 28th, with Fox Searchlight releasing the following day. Based on the novel by Pulitzer Prize-winner Cormac McCarthy, the Coen Brothers’ NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN has been hailed as their best film in years. A mesmerizing thriller about the violent chain reaction that follows a hunter’s discovery of several dead bodies, a major stash of heroin and $2 million in cash, the film stars Tommy Lee Jones, Javier Bardem, Josh Brolin, Woody Harrelson and Kelly MacDonald. The film will debut on Saturday, October 6th, with Miramax releasing the film in November, in time for a major Oscar push.

An illegal abortion is the controversial center of the emotionally and cinematically thrilling 4 MONTHS, 3 WEEKS AND 2 DAYS as two women negotiate for the dangerous procedure in Romania during the final days of the Ceaucescu regime. The first Romanian film ever to win the top prize at  Cannes, this wildly ambitious drama  features powerful performances by Anamaria Marinca and Laura Vasiliu in the lead roles. It is impeccably shot by Oleg Mutu, who collaborated with the director on his well regarded THE DEATH OF MR. LAZARESCU. IFC First Take will release the film, a front runner for the Foreign Language Oscar, later this year. SECRET SUNSHINE, writer/director LEE Chang-dong’s follow-up to his acclaimed 2002 film OASIS, captures the unraveling emotions of a single mother who moves to her husband’s hometown Miryang after his death and is soon facing another tragedy. The film features JEON Do-yeon, in her award-winning performance as the mother Sin-ae, and SONG Kang-ho (THE HOST).

This year's Festival faces some unique logistical challenges due to its change in venue. While Alice Tully Hall, its usual main theater, undergoes extensive renovation, the action shifts a few blocks downtown to the Time Warner Center on Colombus Circle. The Festival will unspool its bigger attractions at the Frederick P. Rose Hall, home of Jazz at Lincoln Center. Screenings will also be held at the Walter Reade Theater, with the Opening Night Gala still held at Lincoln Center ’s Avery Fisher Hall. Further announcements will be made in the coming weeks. This year's Festival Selection Committee is comprised of Richard Peña, chairman and program director at the Film Society; Scott Foundas, film editor and critic, L.A. Weekly; J. Hoberman, film critic, The Village Voice, and visiting lecturer at Harvard University; Kent Jones, associate director of programming at the Film Society and editor-at-large of Film Comment magazine; and Lisa Schwarzbaum, film critic, Entertainment Weekly. New York audiences can expect the unexpected as excitement builds towards one of New York's signature cultural events of the Fall season. For more information, log on to the Film Society website: www.filmlinc.com

Sandy Mandelberger, Film New York Editor

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