Dir: Renny HarlinHarlin brings one of the more gung-ho US films to this year's festival. Samuel L Jackson stars as a former police officer who unwittingly covers up evidence of a murder. Ed Harris and Eva Mendes also star. Sony is releasing domestically.
Int'l sales: Nu Image/Millennium Films, (1) 310 388 6900
Closing The Ring (UK-Can)
Dir: Richard Attenborough
Attenborough returns with this epic love story set in two timeframes - 1991 and the Second World War. Shirley MacLaine, Christopher Plummer and Pete Postlethwaite star. The project has backing from the UK Film Council, and ContentFilm has already sold rights to Japan (Shochiku), Australia (Hopscotch), Germany (TeleMunchen) and Canada (Alliance Atlantis/Odeon), among others.
Int'l sales: ContentFilm, (44) 207 851 6500
Eastern Promises (UK-Can)
Dir: David Cronenberg
Cronenberg reunites with Viggo Mortensen, his leading man from A History Of Violence, in this thriller written by Steven Knight (Dirty Pretty Things). Mortensen plays a Russian mobster whose lifestyle is compromised by a midwife who accidentally uncovers some dark secrets about his employers.
Int'l sales: Focus Features Int'l, (44) 20 7307 1330
Elizabeth: The Golden Age (opening film) (UK-US-Fr)
Dir: Shekhar Kapur
Cate Blanchett and Geoffrey Rush reprise the roles they made famous in the Oscar-nominated Elizabeth (1998). Working Title/Universal again work with director Kapur in continuing the story of Queen Elizabeth I. Oscar winner William Nicholson wrote the script with Michael Hirst. Universal is releasing in North America in mid-October.
Int'l dist: Universal, (44) 20 7307 1300
Emotional Arithmetic (closing film) (Can)
Dir: Paolo Barzman
Based on Matt Cohen's novel and adapted by Jefferson Lewis and Barzman, Emotional Arithmetic follows the stories of three Holocaust survivors. The film stars Susan Sarandon, Christopher Plummer, Gabriel Byrne and Max von Sydow and is produced by BBR Productions and Triptych Media. Seville Pictures is handling distribution in Canada.
Contact: Triptych Media, (1) 416 703 8866
Fugitive Pieces (Can-Gr)
Dir: Jeremy Podeswa
Orphaned by war and saved by a Greek archaeologist (Rade Sherbedgia), Jakob Beer (Stephen Dillane) spends his adult life struggling to come to terms with his past. This is only Podeswa's third feature and his first since 1999's The Five Senses, but the Toronto-born film-maker has been honing his craft on TV dramas including Six Feet Under. Based on the prize-winning novel by Ann Michaels, comparisons are being drawn with the likes of The English Patient.
Int'l sales: Maximum Films, (1) 416 967 7078
The Jane Austen Book Club (US)
Dir: Robin Swicord
A renowned screenwriter, Swicord makes her feature directorial debut with this adaptation of Karen Joy Fowler's novel. Swicord was writing an original screenplay about Jane Austen scholars when producer John Calley introduced her to Fowler's book about six contemporary fans whose lives mirror episodes of Austen's work. The cast includes Maria Bello, Emily Blunt and Jimmy Smits.
Int'l sales: Sony Pictures Releasing International, (1) 310 244 4000
The Last Lear (Ind)
Dir: Rituparno Ghosh
Ghosh's first English-language film is an adaptation of Utpal Dutt's play Aajker Shahjahan which stars Amitabh Bachchan as a failed Shakespearean actor. Planman Motion Pictures produces following a successful collaboration with Ghosh on Dosar, which screened in the World Cinema section at Cannes this year.
Contact: Planman Motion Pictures, (91) 22 67 14 84 87
Dir: Gavin Hood
Director of Oscar-winner Tsotsi, Gavin Hood directs Reese Witherspoon in this drama about the CIA's murky war on terrorism. Jake Gyllenhaal, Meryl Streep, Peter Sarsgaard and Alan Arkin add weight to the tale. New Line is releasing in the US.
Int'l sales: New Line International, (1) 212 649 4900
Reservation Road (US)
Dir: Terry George
Joaquin Phoenix and Jennifer Connelly play a married couple whose lives unravel after their child is killed in a hit-and-run. Mira Sorvino and Mark Ruffalo add weight to George's adaptation of John Burnham Schwartz's acclaimed novel.
Int'l sales: Focus Features International, (1) 818 777 73 73
Second Wind (Fr)
Dir: Alain Corneau
Corneau has remade Jean-Pierre Melville's classic 1966 film noir with an all-star cast, including Monica Bellucci, Daniel Auteuil and Michel Blanc. The story follows a gangster (Auteuil), who escapes from jail to attempt one last hit. The film will also open Rome Film Fest in October.
Int'l sales: Wild Bunch, (33) 1 53 01 50 20
Dir: Aristomenis Tsirbas
Canadian film-maker Tsirbas' debut is an animated action-adventure about an alien who finds herself in a battle with humans to save her planet. Evan Rachel Wood, Luke Wilson and Dennis Quaid are among the voice cast.
Int'l sales: Wild Bunch, (33) 1 53 01 50 20
Battle In Seattle (US)
Dir: Stuart Townsend
Townsend makes his directorial debut with a drama about events surrounding the 1999 World Trade Organisation protests in Seattle. Charlize Theron, Ray Liotta and Woody Harrelson are caught up in the mayhem.
Int'l sales: Hyde Park International, (1) 818 783 6060
Before The Rains (US)
Dir: Santosh Sivan
Set in southern India in the 1930s against the backdrop of a growing nationalist movement, the English-language debut of Indian director Sivan stars Rahul Bose as an idealist troubled by an affair between his British employer and a village woman.
Contact: Echo Lake Productions, (1) 310 789 4790
Aaron Eckhart plays a loser married to a cheating wife who is forced to adopt a rebellious teenager. Jessica Alba, Elizabeth Banks and Logan Lerman also star.
Int'l sales: GreeneStreet Films International, (1) 310 860 1113
The Brave One (US-Aus)
Dir: Neil Jordan
As the victim of a brutal attack who turns vigilante in Neil Jordan's The Brave One, Jodie Foster returns to the kind of disturbing territory she explored in The Silence Of The Lambs.
Int'l dist: Warner Bros Pictures International, (1) 818 954 6000
Captain Mike Across America (US)
Dir: Michael Moore
Filmed after the Fahrenheit 9/11 release, this portion of the documentary Michael Moore's Uprising covers Moore's 62-city college tour in 2004 to encourage students to vote in the presidential election. Features guest appearances from Viggo Mortensen, Steve Earle and Joan Baez.
Int'l sales: The Weinstein Co, (1) 646 862 3400
Death Defying Acts (UK-Aus)
Dir: Gillian Armstrong
Guy Pearce plays legendary escapologist Harry Houdini in this period mystery from Armstrong, which also stars Catherine Zeta-Jones. The Weinstein Company is releasing domestically.
Int'l sales: Myriad Pics, (1) 310 279 4050
The Girl In The Park (US)
Dir: David Auburn
Screenwriter Auburn makes his directorial debut with this tale, starring Sigourney Weaver as a woman tormented by the disappearance, 15 years earlier, of her three-year-old daughter.
Int'l sales: QED Int'l, (1) 310 273 3004
Here Is What Is (Can)
Dirs: Adam Vollick, Daniel Lanois, Adam Samuels
This fly-on-the-wall documentary follows music producer Daniel Lanois, who has worked with the likes of U2, Peter Gabriel and Bob Dylan, as he travels the world on business.
Int'l sales: Baker Hostetler, (1) 213 975 1708
Dir: John Sayles
Sayles directs this 1950s tale starring Danny Glover as an Alabama bar owner who turns to desperate measures to keep his business alive. Lisa Gay Hamilton, Mary Steenburgen and Stacy Keach star.
Int'l sales: Rezo Films, (33) 6 21 71 39 11
In Bloom (US)
Dir: Vadim Perelman
Uma Thurman plays a mother who questions her idyllic life on the 15th anniversary of a shooting at her old high school. Director Perelman's follow-up to Oscar-nominated House Of Sand And Fog.
Int'l sales: 2929 International, (1) 310 309 5200
Into The Wild (US)
Dir: Sean Penn
Penn delivers a heartfelt adaptation of John Krakauer's book based on a young graduate's decision to turn his back on materialism and head out to Alaska in search of truth. Emile Hirsch stars.
Int'l sales: Paramount Vantage, (1) 323 956 2000
Dir: Jason Reitman
Reitman was the toast of Toronto two years ago and his follow-up to Thank You For Smoking is expected to be one of the festival's hottest tickets. A teenager (Jennifer Garner) has to make some tough decisions about her unborn child. Fox Searchlight is releasing domestically.
Int'l sales: Mandate Pictures, (1) 310 300 2045
Lars And The Real Girl (US)
Dir: Craig Gillespie
Oscar-nominee Ryan Gosling stars in this comedy as an introvert who stuns his friends and family when he introduces them to his friend Bianca, a life-size doll. MGM is releasing domestically.
Int'l sales: Kimmel International, (1) 212 431 5550
Married Life (US)
Dir: Ira Sachs
Forty Shades Of Blue film-maker Sachs has mixed up a heady brew of murder and marriage with this 1940s-set tale. Pierce Brosnan, Patricia Clarkson, Chris Cooper and Rachel McAdams star as four friends ensnared in a web of deceit.
Int'l sales: Kimmel International, (1) 212 431 5550
Dir: Sergei Bodrov
Multi-award-winning director Bodrov (Prisoner Of The Mountains, The Nomad), tackles the story of the young Genghis Khan. The film stars Tadanobu Asano (Zatoichi) as Genghis Khan and is produced by Sergei Selyanov, Anton Melnik and Bulat Galimgereyev.
Contact: PictureHouse, (1) 212 303 1720
My Winnipeg (Can)
Dir: Guy Maddin
A Maddin film is always an event and reportedly with this film the director has outdone himself. The first in a planned series of documentary portraits by auteurs of their favourite cities, M is Maddin's love poem to his infamously cold hometown.
Int'l sales: Maximum Films, (514) 416 967 7078
Across The Universe (US)
Dir: Julie Taymor
After forays into the Latin American art scene (Frida) and Shakespeare (Titus), Taymor turns her attention to 1960s America in Across The Universe (pictured). Jim Sturgess and Evan Rachel Wood play young lovers caught up in the tumultuous world of anti-war protests, sex, drugs, and rock and roll. The Commitments screenwriters Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais wrote the script.
Int'l sales: Sony Pictures Releasing International, (1) 310 244 4000.