Cannes Festival Line-Up Announced

By Garth Franklin Wednesday April 23rd 2008 06:10AM

The 61st Cannes Film Festival has announced its official line-up this morning with twenty features in competition for the coveted Palme d'Or.

The most notable inclusions this year are the Clint Eastwood-directed, Angelina Jolie-led 1920's set thriller "The Changeling", and the first of Steven Soderbergh's two Che Guevara biopics - "The Argentine".

Reports indicate that Soderbergh was racing to finish a rough cut of the film in time for the competition and came very close to pulling out altogether due to it not being ready in time.

Also screening in competition are:

24 City (China) Director: Jia Zhangke Spanning 50 years, the story chronicles the lives of workers in a factory that will be demolished to make way for a skyscraper.

Adoration (Canada) Cast: Scott Speedman, Rachel Blanchard, Devon Bostick Director: Atom Egoyan The drama revolves around teens trying to conquer this brave new world and how people can invent themselves, or re-invent themselves, through technology.

Un Conte de Noel (France) Cast: Catherine Deneuve, Mathieu Amalric, Chiara Mastroianni Director: Arnaud Desplechin The story of a family who gather at their estate in the north of France on Christmas Eve. Three days of battle ensue.

Daydreams (Turkey) Director: Nuri Bilge Ceylan A detective story involving four characters, a woman and three men, and takes place in little known areas of Istanbul.

Delta (Hungary) Cast: Felix Lajko, Orsi Toth, Lili Monori, Sandor Gaspar Director: Kornel Mundruczo Set in a futuristic world, Delta recounts the misadventures of Michael, a young man who attends his father's funeral in the wild and labyrinthine world of Delta, and who also has a secret mission to accomplish. In a strange village in quarantine, a young girl tries to save the inhabitants of the town and falls in love with Michael who, in fact, turns out to be her brother. And the discovery that their father was actually murdered leads Michael into a merciless struggle against the killer

Il Divo (Italy) Cast: Toni Servillo, Michele Placido, Anna Bonaiuto Director: Paolo Sorrentino Portrait of controversial Italian politician Giulio Andreotti, the country's seven-time former prime minister, tried for Mafia ties and subsequently acquitted

Gomorra (Italy) Cast: Toni Servillo, Gianfelice Imparato Director: Matteo Garrone Made up of six short episodes with six main characters-- all revolving around the four-sided criminality between the port of Naples, Scampia, Castelvolturno and Terzigno.

La Frontiere de L'Aube (France) Cast: Louis Garrel, Laura Smet, Clémentine Poidatz Director: Philippe Garrel Follows a young photographer about to tie the knot. On the morning of the wedding, while he is getting dressed, a vision appears to him in the mirror of his ex-lover, an actress who committed suicide after he cut out her out from his life and who has now come back to haunt him, calling him from another world

Leonera (Argentina) Director: Pablo Trapero Tells of an ill-fated and beautiful woman who kills her two lovers and later gives birth to a son in prison. She then trys to raise her son behind bars.

Linha de Passe Cast: Vinícius de Oliveira, Kaique Jesus Santos, João Baldasserini Director: Walter Salles The story of a band of brothers intent on getting out of the Brazilian ghetto in this Media Rights Capital production.

La mujer sin cabeza (Argentina) Director: Lucrecia Martel A politically tinged woman’s drama.

My Magic (Singapore) Director: Eric Khoo Inspired by real-life fire-eater Francis Bosco, who will play a downtrodden alcoholic magician who tries to reconnect with his 14-year-old son. Shot in 80% Tamil language, with a bit of Hokkien and English.

The Palermo Shooting (Germany) Cast: Milla Jovovich, Dennis Hopper, Giovanna Mezzogiorno, Patti Smith Director: Wim Wenders Follows a hotshot German photographer from Berlin who comes to Palermo because he needs to make a clean break from his past. In the city he meets a young woman and a completely different way of life.

Serbis (Philippines) Cast: Gina Pareño, Kristofer King, Coco Martin Director: Brillante Mendoza Set in a run-down porn theater, the film deals with male prostitution and will also feature real-life service boys.

The Silence of Lorna (Belgium) Director: Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne Centers on an arranged marriage of an illegal immigrant from Albania to a drug addict.

Synechdoche, New York (USA) Cast: Philip Seymour Hoffman, Michelle Williams, Emily Watson Director: Charlie Kaufman A theater director (Hoffman) struggles with his work, and the women in his life, as he attempts to create a life-size replica of New York inside a warehouse as part of his new play

Waltz With Bashir (Israel) Director: Ari Folman Documents the filmmaker's journey toward discovering the truth about an Israeli Army mission he participated in during the first Lebanon War of the early 1980s that left him with a loss of memory about the events. The long-forgotten images begin to resurface as the director interviews old friends and comrades around the world

Out of competition will be screenings of "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull" on May 18th, Jeffrey Katzenberg will present a screening of Dreamworks' "Kung-Fu Panda", and Woody Allen will show his risque "Vicky Cristina Barcelona" starring Penelope Cruz, Scarlett Johansson and Javier Bardem.

There'll also be special screenings of Wong Kar-wai's "Ashes of Time Redux", Terence Davies British feature "Of Time and the City", Jennifer Lynch's American thriller "Surveillance", and

The competition runs from May 14th-25th.