Bestselling French writer Michel Houellebecq's feature film directorial debut The Impossibility Of An Island, adapted from his 2005 novel of the same name, will have its world premiere in Locarno's Play Forward sidebar which is dedicated to all contemporary forms of audio-visual experimentation and creation.

The $10.3m (Euros 6.5m) futuristic drama, starring Benoit Magimel, Patrick Bauchau and Ramata Koite, was produced by Mandarin Cinema with Morena Films, Black Forest Films, WAT Productions, ARTE France/WDR, Lagardere, Studio 37, and Michel Houellebecq Ltd.

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Another novel by Houellebecq, Atomised (aka Elementary Particles), was adapted for the cinema by German director Oskar Roehler and first shown in competition at the Berlinale in February 2006.

Play Forward's programme, which showcases intriguing, sometimes extreme works standing at the intersection of video art and other arts, will also include films by established artists from the US (Doug Aitken), Italy (Olivo Barbieri, Maia Guarnaccia and Masbedo), Switzerland (Emmanuelle Antille and Frederic Choffat), France (Stephen Dean, Pierre Coulibeuf, Ange Leccia, Vincent Dieutre), Mexico (Teresa Serrano) and Austria (Josef Dabernig and Erwin Wurm).