San Diego fest will open on ‘Evil’ note

To showcase 80 features, some int'l and student prod'ns

The San Diego World Film Festival, the city’s first-ever international movie fest, is set to begin June 2 and run through June 11. The 10-day event will showcase about 80 features and short films, including foreign and student productions, as well as high-profile studio pictures.

The festival will open with the world premiere of Moondog Prods.’ drama “A Lesser Evil,” starring David Paymer, Tony Goldwyn, Arliss Howard and Colm Feore. Fox Searchlight’s comedy “Cousin Bette,” with Jessica Lange and Elisabeth Shue, is scheduled to close the festival.

“A Perfect Murder,” the new Andrew Davis suspenser from Warner Bros., will unspool June 3. The film, starring Michael Douglas and Gwyneth Paltrow, opens nationally June 5.

On June 4, Paramount will provide a special showing of “The Truman Show.” The Peter Weir-helmed pic, which stars Jim Carrey, Ed Harris and Laura Linney, opens nationally June 5.

Additionally, United Artists will present a special retrospective program of more than 20 classic films from its vault, including a James Bond marathon.

A “dialogue series” is planned for June 5-7. Speakers include film editor Conrad Buff presenting “Editing ‘Titanic,’ ” and producer Stacy Codikow discussing “Getting Your Indie to the Screen.”

The San Diego fest jury will present several awards, including major studio feature film, American independent feature film, and a humanitarian award. John Frankenheimer and Martin Landau will receive lifetime achievement awards. A black tie awards gala will be held June 6 at the Sheraton Hotel and Marina.

The festival is produced by the Cinema Entertainment Alliance in cooperation with the San Diego Film Commission and Silvervision Entertainment. The artistic director is writer-author-producer Herb Margolis.

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