Robert Benton's The HumanStain and Billy Ray's timely biopicof a plagiarising reporter in Shattered Glass bookend the 39th Chicago International FilmFestival, which runs from Oct 2-16 and features tributes to Benton, RobertDowney Jr and Taye Diggs.
Among the roster of 94 filmsfrom 40 countries are Gold Hugo international competition entries Noi TheAlbino from Iceland's Dagur Kari and Christoffer Boe's Danish dramaReconstruction.
Special presentationsinclude Denys Arcand's comedy-drama The Barbarian Invasions and Jim Sheridan's drama In America, while a packed World Cinema programme featuresGaylene Preston's thriller Perfect Strangers (New Zealand) and Alexey Uchitel's romance TheStroll (Russia).
Documentaries includeJonathan Demme's portrait of Haitian human rights activist Jean Dominique in TheAgronomist and Rithy Panh's accountof Cambodian genocide in S21: The Khmer Rouge Killing Machine.
The New Directorscompetition strand features Sylvain Chomet's French animation The TripletsOf Belleville, Paul Quinn's rehabdrama Never Get Outta The Boatand Sue Brooks' acclaimed Australian drama Japanese Story.
Benton, a triple Oscarwinner whose writer-director credits include Kramer Vs Kramer, Places In The Heart and Bonnie And Clyde, will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award fromSally Field prior to the opening night screening.
Field won the best actressOscar for her role in Places In The Heart and will be in attendance with The Human Stain star Anthony Hopkins.
Ray's Shattered Glass is the eagerly awaited tale of disgraced Americanmagazine journalist Stephen Glass, who was fired from his job for fabricatingarticles.
Ray and his lead actorsHayden Christensen and Peter Sarsgaard will be in attendance for the screening.
Downey Jr will receive acareer achievement award on Oct 6 before the Midwest premiere of Keith Gordon'sadaptation of Dennis Potter's The Singing Detective, in which he stars as a delusional bed-riddenwriter.
Taye Diggs will receive theExcellence In Film-making Award as the 2003 Black Perspectives Honouree on Oct12. Diggs' credits include How Stella Got her Groove Back, Brown Sugar and The Way of The Gun.
Titles previously confirmedin the festival include Peter Hedges' comedy-drama Pieces Of April, Pieter Kramer's feel-good musical extravaganza YesNurse! No Nurse! (Netherlands),Claude Chabrol's acclaimed dark comedy of manners Flower Of Evil (France) and Jafar Panahi's Cannes prizewinningpolitical drama Crimson Gold(Iran)
A line-up of 46 short filmsfrom 38 countries will screen Tsai Ming-Liang's The Skywalk Is Gone (Taiwan), Agnes Varda's The Volatile Lion (France), Nanni Moretti's The Last Customer (Italy) and Dominique Monfrey's Destino (France), a completion of the legendarycollaboration between Salvador Dali and Walt Disney that originated more than60 years ago.