The ninth Bermuda International Film Festival willkick off tonight with a screening of Paul Weitz's American Dreamz,a satire of American politics and show business starring Dennis Quaid, Willem Dafoe, Hugh Grant and Mandy Moore.

The festival has expanded to a nine-day event thisyear, and will close March 25 with Julian Jarrold'sBritish comedy Kinky Boots.

Bermuda's programme this year includes a spotlight on Bermuda resident Michael Douglas, who will screen Falling Down and participate in an interview and Q&A.

"Michael has a truly impressive and extensivebody of work, both as an actor and as a producer. We look forward to a veryspecial evening with him," said festival director AideenRatteray Pryse.

Bermuda's feature competition includes Khalo Matabane's Conversations on a Sunday Afternoon,Annie Griffin's Festival, SarahWatt's Look Both Ways, John Hillcoat's TheProposition, Diane Bertrand's TheRing Finger (L'Annulaire), Maria Prochazkova's Sharkin the Head (Zralok v hlave),Julia Solomonoff's Sisters (Hermanas), and David Scheinmann's The WestWittering Affair.

The documentaries in competition are Micha X. Peled's China Blue, Jeff Zimbalistand Matt Mochary's Favela Rising, Ayelet Bechar'sJust Married, PippaScott's King Leopold's Ghost, SamDunn, Scot McFadyen, and Jessica Joy Wise's Metal: A Headbanger'sJourney, and three world premieres: Jeff Pearson's Pirate Radio USA, Lucinda Spurling's Rare Bird, and Errol Williams' Walking on a Sea of Glass.

The shorts competition includes 25 films. Othersections include modern South Korean cinema, the World Cinema Showcase,children's films, midnight films, andspecial presentations.

Bermuda's jury includes actor Peter Riegert,documentary film-maker Stanley Nelson, Santa Barbara festival director Roger Durling,critic Robert Koehler, Atlantic Film Festival director LiaRinaldo, actress Laura Elena Harring,and local producer Elmore Warren.