The 14th Athens International Film Festival will open with a gala presentation of Laurent Cantet's Cannes 2008 Golden Palm winner Entre les Murs. Mike Leigh's Happy Go Lucky is the closing film. The festival line up boasts 153 titles in ten different sections and four tributes.
The 13 pictures strong international competition section includes among others, Antonio Campos' Afterschool, Omar Shargawl's Go With Peace Jamil, Pierre Schoeller's Versailles Jens Jonsson's King of Ping Pong, and Macdara Vallely's Peacefire.
The European Youth Jury, comprised of cinephiles aged between 18-25 from EU member states, will award the Golden Athena and $14,000 (Euros 10,000) to the best film.
A further Golden Athena and $14,000 (Euros 10,000) will be awarded to the best film of the competition section, Music and Film. The five member international jury is headed by American film critic Kirk Honeycutt.Films competing in this section include Andrew Van Baal's and Mark Flanagan's Largo, Robert Patton-Spruill's Public Enemy: Welcome to the Terrordome, and Carl Levy's Bananaz.
Other notable titles screening out of competition include Matteo Garrone's Gomorra, Christophe Barratier's Faubourg 36, Paolo Sorrentino's Il Divo, Woody Allen's Vicky Cristina Barcelona and Steve McQueen's Hunger.
While the Documentaries section is led by Marina Zenovich's controversial offering Roman Polanski: Wanted and Desired and includes Ivan O' Mahoneys and Laura Winter's Baghdad High as well as Philippe Diaz's The End of Poverty.
Various film figures will be honoured at the festival homage including director Jacques Tourneur with Cat People among his films to be screened. Other tributes include those reserved for female directors, Albertina Carri and French actress turned director Isild le Besco.