Cillian Murphy last night launchedthe programme for the Jameson Dublin International Film Festival (JDIFF) whichkicks off on February 17 with the world premiere of Paul Mercier's debutfeature, Studs.

Studs will be thefirst in a strong line up of new Irish films being shown at this year's event.They include Anthony Byrne's modern musical, Short Order; Patrick Jolley'sexperimental New York-set drama, Sugar;Tommy Collins's Donegal-set Dead LongEnough, winner of the audience award at the Cardiff Film Festival; a newtake on Hamlet from Derry-basedactor/director Stephen Cavanagh; and the worldpremiere of Mark Hammond's London-set IRA drama, Johnny Was, whose stars Laurence Kinlan,Patrick Bergin and Vinnie Jones will attend.

Eoin Moore, the Berlin-based Irishdirector, is back with a serious comedy NoSweat, while the Polish-trained Norah McGettiganwill make her festival debut with the short feature A Song For Rebecca, and UK-based Billy O'Brien's Isolation, a piece of grand guignolset in rural Ireland, will also be screened.

Studs also leads aseven-film season of football dramas and documentaries, and a panoramaprogramme of films from around the world supported by local home entertainmentoutlet Chartbusters. These include Netto from Hungary,Fatelessfrom Hungary, 3 Needles from Canada,the BAFTA-nominated Tsotsifrom South Africa,Geminisfrom Argentina,Time to Leave from France,Three Times from Taiwan,Johanna from Romania,and Once You're Born from Italy.

A 19-film season of American independents includes themuch-awarded and nominated Capote andTransamerica, The Matador, Steven Soderberg's Bubble, and Rebecca Miller's The Ballad Of Jack AndRose. David Ayer's Keane, David Mamet and Stuart Gordon's Edmond, JamesMarsh and Milo Addica's The King, and the latest from Colin Farrell - Robert Towne's Ask The Dustare also among the titles being shown.

This year the JDIFF will host a film industry conference aspart of the programme. Further discussion events will include a look at entry-levelbudgeting for production supported by the Broadcasting Commission of Irelandand the impact of digital cinema on industry and audience alike amongst othertopics.

The JDIFF closes on Feb 26 with Rebecca Miller's The Ballad Of Jack AndRose which will be attended by Miller and its star, Daniel Day-Lewis. Otherguests confirmed to attend the festival include Julie Walters for Driving Lessons, John Madden for Proof, James Marsh and Milo Addica for The King,and Ralph Fiennes for The White Countess.The majority of these guests will be present for public interviews and Q&Asessions.