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Edinburgh Film Festival’s New Chief Mark Adams Unveils Debut Lineup

LONDON — Mark Adams, the new artistic director of the Edinburgh Film Festival, unveiled Wednesday his debut lineup, which includes 24 world premieres, eight international premieres, 16 European premieres and 84 U.K. premieres.

The festival, which runs June 17-28, will showcase 164 features from 36 countries. Highlights include the U.K. premiere of Asif Kapadia’s documentary “Amy,” about the life of singer Amy Winehouse, Disney-Pixar’s animated film “Inside Out,” Arnold Schwarzenegger as a tormented father tending his zombie daughter in “Maggie,” Andrew Mogel and Jarrad Paul’s “The D-Train,” starring Jack Black and James Marsden, and John Cusack and Paul Dano playing different aged versions of Beach Boys star Brian Wilson in music film “Love & Mercy.”

The festival will also be presenting a series of interviews with leading film personalities, such as Ewan McGregor, who will attend with his new film “Last Days in the Desert,” Jane Seymour and Malcolm McDowell, both in Edinburgh for their starring roles in “Bereave,” cult Hong-Kong director Johnnie To, with his feature “Exiled,” and cinematographer Haskell Wexler.

British films competing for the Michael Powell Award — for best British film and performance in a British film — include 10 world premieres and three U.K. premieres.

Among the contenders are Andrew Haigh’s portrait of a fractured relationship, “45 Years,” with performances from Charlotte Rampling and Tom Courtenay; relationship comedy “Black Mountain Poets” from Jamie Adams; Joseph Bull and Luke Seomore’s “Blood Cells,” about a farmer’s son and his nomadic lifestyle, which he is forced to leave behind; the world premiere of complex sci-fi thriller “Brand New-U” from documentary-maker Simon Pummell; and Jake Gavin’s “Hector,” starring Peter Mullan as an affable homeless man.

Other films seeking the award include Martin Radich’s “Norfolk,” a haunting film starring Denis Menochet; Steven Nesbit’s “Romeo and Juliet” style drama “North V South,” starring Greta Scacchi, Steven Berkoff and Bernard Hill; and Colin Kennedy’s directorial debut feature “Swung.”

The section also includes Jane Linfoot’s psychological drama “The Incident,” which also receives its world premiere, starring Ruta Gedmintas and Tom Hughes as a young couple whose comfortable life is disrupted when a troubled teenage girl enters their life; Ludwig and Paul Shammasian’s “The Pyramid Texts,” starring James Cosmo; and author Helen Walsh’s debut as writer/director, “The Violators,” which follows two young girls from radically different backgrounds who meet and set off on a course that has profound implications.

“The Legend of Barney Thomson,” Robert Carlyle’s directorial debut and the festival’s opening gala, and “Iona,” Scott Graham’s family drama and the closing night gala, are also in contention for the Michael Powell Award.

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