The 21st annual Guadalajara International Film Festival in Mexicowill open on March 24 with a screening of Carlos Saura's Iberiaand close on March 31 with Edward James Olmos'English-language picture Walkoutfeaturing Spy Kids star Alexa Vega.

This year marks the inaugural event run by director-generalJorge Sanchez Sosa, a veteran producer with credits including four Arturo Ripstein films.

The 16-film Iberocamerican filmcompetition will include Isabel Coixet's Goya-winner The Secret Life Of Words and JesusPonce's 15 Days With You from Spain,and Francisco Vargas Quevedo's The Violin, Julian Hernandez's BrokenSky (screening in Panorama at Berlin), Carlos Bolado'sSolo Dios Sabe (which had its world premiere at Sundance) andMarisa Sistach's LaNina En La Piedra from Mexico.

From Brazil, Competition titles include AndruchaWaddington's House Of Sand, Beto Brant's Crime Delicado and Marcelo Gomes' Cinema, Aspirinas E Urubus;from Colombia comes Javier Mejia's Apocalipsur and from Venezuela comes Alfredo Anzola's 1888.

Sanchez has instituted a documentary competition strand forthe first time which will feature Adan Aliega's MyGrandmother's House from Spain and the Sundance award winner In The Pit directed by Juan Carlos Rulfo.

Eleven world premieres will compete in the Mexicancompetition section, three of which will also play in the Iberoamericancompetition.

Sanchez said that the festival would feature retrospectivesof Spanish actress Marisa Paredes and USfilm-maker John Sayles.

The festival incorporates the IberoamericanFilm Market, in its fourth edition, which will be attended by a variety ofbuyers including a large UScontingent from US TV, arthouse and DVDdistributors catering to the US Latino audience.