Seven world premieres in U.K. gala section

LONDON — The lineup to new artistic director Hannah McGill’s first Edinburgh Intl. Film Festival promises world premieres of some anticipated Brit pics, a focus on screenwriting throughout the program and a healthy dose of star wattage.

Seven of the 11 strong British gala section are world premieres: Gary Love’s “Sugarhouse,” Wilma and Duncan Finnigan’s “My Life as a Bus Stop,” Greg Loftin’s “Saxon,” Simon Miller’s “Searchd — The Inaccessible Pinnacle,” Justin Edgar’s “Special People,” Roger Goldby’s “The Waiting Room” and Tom Shankland’s “WAZ.”

Others competing in the section, all of which compete for the Michael Powell Award for best Brit feature, are Anton Corbijn’s Cannes hit “Control,” Jim Threapleton’s “Extraordinary Rendition,” Tom Hunsinger’s “Sparkle” and Anand Tucker’s “And When Did You Last See Your Father?”

Fest closes August 26 with a screening of helmer-writer-star Julie Delpy’s walk-and-talker “2 Days in Paris.”

As previously announced, Scottish helmer David Mackenzie’s Edinburgh-set drama “Hallam Foe,” about a Scottish youth (Jamie Bell) struggling to cope with the death of his mother, will open the fest August 15.

EIFF gives gala screenings to 10 pics including Matthew Vaughn’s epic fantasy “Stardust,” Michael Winterbottom’s Angelina Jolie starrer “A Mighty Heart” and Quentin Tarantino’s B-movie homage “Death Proof.” Judd Apatow’s U.S. box office hit “Knocked Up” screens in the gala section.

Bela Tarr’s artsy “The Man From London” and Gus Van Sant’s “Paranoid Park,” which both divided critics at Cannes, top the bill in the Directors’ Showcase section.

In her first year as artistic director of the fest, McGill has attracted a bevy of stars to give EIFF some showbiz sparkle. Guests taking part in onstage talks will include directors John Waters, Apatow, Stephen Frears and Mike Leigh, and actors Samantha Morton, Chris Cooper, Delpy, Bob Hoskins, Stellan Skarsgard and Tilda Swinton (recently announced as EIFF’s new patron).

McGill is keen for the fest to crossover with other cultural institutions and events, and, for the first time in the fest’s history, this year’s fest will have an official theme: “Cinema and the Written Word.”

The EIFF 2007 program includes joint events with the National Theater of Scotland, Edinburgh International Book Festival, Edinburgh International Festival and the Traverse Theater, and onstage talks with screenwriters Christopher Hampton, William Nicholson, Paul Laverty and Irvine Welsh.

The Retrospective is dedicated to legendary Hollywood screenwriter Anita Loos.

Fest will act as the U.K. launchpad for Martin Scorsese’s World Cinema Foundation print restoration initiative, which was launched at Cannes.

For nostalgic auds, EIFF 2007 offers a screening of Rainer Werner Fassbinder’s “Berlin Alexanderplatz” and three remastered Shakespeare adaptations, all starring Laurence Olivier.

The lineup for the 61st edition of the fest was announced July 11 at the Filmhouse in Edinburgh.

2007 EDINBURGH INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL LINEUP

OPENING NIGHT FILM
“Hallam Foe,” U.K., David Mackenzie

CLOSING NIGHT FILM
“Two Days in Paris,” France-Germany, Julie Delpy

GALA
“Breach,” U.S., Billy Ray
“The Counterfeiters,” Germany-Austria, Stefan Ruzowitzky
“Death Proof,” U.S., Quentin Tarantino
“The Hottest State,” U.S., Ethan Hawke
“In the Shadow of the Moon,” U.K., David Sington
“Knocked Up,” U.S., Judd Apatow
“A Mighty Heart,” U.S., Michael Winterbottom
“Stardust,” U.K.-U.S., Matthew Vaughn
“We Are Together,” U.K., Paul Taylor
“Year of the Dog,” U.S., Mike White

BRITISH GALA
“And When Did You Last See Your Father?,” U.K., Anand Tucker
“Control,” U.K., Anton Corbijn
“Extraordinary Rendition,” U.K., Jim Threapleton
“My Life as a Bus Stop,” U.K., Wilma Finnigan, Duncan Finnigan
“Saxon,” U.K., Greg Loftin
“Seachd – The Inaccessible Pinnacle,” U.K., Simon Miller
“Sparkle,” U.K., Tom Hunsinger, Neil Hunter
“Special People,” U.K., Justin Edgar
“Sugarhouse,” U.K., Gary Love
“The Waiting Room,” U.K., Roger Goldby
“WAZ,” U.K.-U.S., Tom Shankland

ROSEBUD
“Aria,” Japan, Takushi Tsubokawa
“Auftauchen,” Germany, Felicitas Korn
“Blackbird,” U.S., Adam Rapp
“Blame it on Fidel,” France, Julie Gavras
“Blind Mountain,” Germany-China, Li Yang
“A Casa de Alice,” Brazil, Chico Teixeira
“Children of Glory,” Hungary, Krisztina Goda
“Ex Drummer,” Belgium, Koen Mortier
“Faro — Goddess of the Waters,” France-Canada-Mali-Burkina-Faso-Germany, Salif Traore
“In the Cities,” Canada, Catherine Martin
“The Interpreter,” Switzerland-Russia, Elena Hazanov
“The Italian,” Russia, Andrei Kravchuk
“Komma,” France-Belgium, Martine Doyen
“Kythera,” Hungary, Peter Meszaros
“The Last Dining Table,” S. Korea, Roh Gyeong-tae
“Lovely by Surprise,” U.S., Kirt Gunn
“Parting Shot,” France-Switzerland, Jeanne Waltz
“Razzle Dazzle: A Journey into Dance,” Australia, Darren Ashton
“Riza,” Turkey, Tayfun Pirselimoglu
“Rocket Science,” U.S., Jeffrey Blitz
“Skills Like This,” U.S., Monty Miranda
“Solitary Fragments,” Spain, Jaime Rosales
“Western Trunk Line,” China-Japan, Li Jixian
“XXY,” Argentina-Spain-France, Lucia Puenzo
“Yo,” Spain, Rafa Cortes

NIGHT MOVIES
“Day Watch,” Russia, Timur Bekmambetov
“Joshua,” U.S., George Ratliff
“Shrooms,” Ireland, Paddy Breathnach
“Teeth,” U.S., Mitchell Lichtenstein
“Weirdsville,” Canada, Allan Moyle

DIRECTORS SHOWCASE
“Beaufort,” Israel, Joseph Cedar
“Beauty in Trouble,” Czech Republic, Jan Hrebejk
“Breath,” S. Korea, Kim Ki-duk
“Les Chansons d’amour,” France, Christophe Honore
“The Home Song Stories,” Australia, Tony Ayres
“I Served the King of England,” Czech Republic-Slovakia, Jiri Menzel
“I’m a Cyborg, but That’s OK,” S. Korea, Park Chan-wook
“In Search of a Midnight Kiss,” U.S., Alex Holdridge
“It’s Gonna Get Worse,” Czech Republic, Petr Nikolaev
“The Legacy,” France-Georgia, Gela Babluani, Temur Babluani
“The Man from London,” France-Germany-Hungary, Bela Tarr
“The New Man,” Sweden-Finland, Klaus Haro
“The Old Garden,” S. Korea, Im Sang-soo
“Once,” Ireland, John Carney
“Paranoid Park,” U.S., Gus Van Sant
“The Serpent,” France, Eric Barbier
“Twisted Sister,” Germany, Ed Herzog
“The Witnesses,” France, Andre Techine
“Yella,” Germany, Christian Petzold

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