US-based Global Film Initiative (GFI) has announced the line-up of nine films that it has selected to  headline the Global Lens 2011 film series.

The line-up includes Zhang Lu’s portrait of Chinese-Korean border politics, Dooman River, and Indian filmmaker Sidharth Srinivasan’s tale of caste and class in rural India, Soul Of Sand, which premiered at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival.

The series also features Kyrgyz director Aktan Arym Kubat’s festival favourite The Light Thief; Iranian auteur Mohammad Rasoulof’s The White Meadows; Bosnian director Ahmed Imamovic’s Belvedere, and Georgian newcomer Levan Koguashvili’s story of drug addiction in Tbilisi, Street Days.

From Latin America, GFI has selected Federico Veiroj’s homage to Uruguayan cinephile culture, A Useful Life, Diego Lerman’s portrait of sexual psyche in mid-80s Argentina, The Invisible Eye, and Brazilian director Sergio Bianchi’s The Tenants.

“This year’s line-up really does break new ground for the series,” said GFI chairman Susan Weeks Coulter. “The films are unusual and intriguing, wildly creative, experimental at times and quite different from previous editions of Global Lens.”

The films will premiere Jan 13-28 at the Museum of Modern Art in New York before embarking on a year-long tour of more than 35 cities across the US and Cananda. The series will also be presented in Washington D.C. in January as part of a newly established partnership with the Smithsonian Institution and will be simultaneously released throughout the year on Virgin America airlines.  

As a Hubert Bals Fund recipient, Soul Of Sand has already been pre-sold to Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg, and will receive its European premiere at the 2011 Rotterdam film festival.