The 43rd Karlovy Vary International Film Festival (KVIFF) has announced its final line-up.
The festival will conclude July 12 with a gala screening of Mamma Mia!, Phyllida Lloyd's adaptation of the musical inspired by the music of Abba.
As previously reported, Barry Levinson's What Just Happened' will open the festival July 4.
Robert De Niro will present the film and receive a Crystal Globe in recognition of his Outstanding Artistic Contribution to World Cinema.
Fourteen films are competing for the festival's grand prize - to be decided by a jury led by Ivan Passer. The selection is heavy on European entries.
Czech films are represented by Michaela Pavlatova's Night Owls and Petr Zelenka's The Karamazovs . Also from Eastern Europe are Behind The Glass (Zrinko Ogresta, Croatia), The Investigator (Attila Gigor, Hungary-Sweden-Ireland), and Captive (Alexey Uchitel, Russia-Bulgaria)
Among the world premieres in the main competition, only two have attached international sales agents: Telepool is handling director Tom Schreiber's Dr. Alemán and WIDE Management is handling Manuel Poutte's Distant Tremors.
Czech-born director Ivan Passer will lead the international jury, which also includes actresses Brenda Blethyn and Johanna ter Steege, producer Ted Hope, composer Jan P. Muchow, cinematographer Vilmos Zsigmond, and director Ari Folman, who will present his Cannes title Waltz With Bashir out of competition.
Fifteen films from Central and Eastern Europe are competing in the East of the West section.
Estonian director Rene Vilber's I Was Here screens in world premiere. The other 14 titles will see their international premiere in Karlovy Vary and include Cannes titles Tulpan (Kazakhstan, dir. Sergey Dvortsevoy) and Boogie (Romania, dir. Radu Muntean), Edinburgh titles Time To Die (Poland, Dorota Kedzierzawska) and Vogelfrei (Latvia, dir. Anna Viduleja, Gatis Smits, Janis Kalejs, Janis Putnins).
British film historian and critic Peter Hames chairs the East of the West jury, which also includes Bulgarian filmmaker Milena Andonova, Alpe Adria Cinema artistic programmer Annamaria Percavassi, Czech producer Vratislav Slajer and Hungarian journalist Eva Barsony.
Sixteen films are competing for the Best Documentary title, among them the three world premieres: Bye Bye Shanghai (Czech Republic-Argentina, dir. Jana Bokova), Lost World (Hungary-Finland, dir. Gyula Nemes) and Rene (Czech Republic, dir. Helena Trestikova)
Danish filmmaker Jorgen Leth will chair the documentary jury, which also includes Hot Docs programming director Sean Farnel, Swiss producer Elda Guidinetti, Tokyo Filmex director Kanako Hayashi, and Czech filmmaker Erika Hnikova.
World premieres screening out of competition include Juraj Jakubisko's Bathory and Tom Thurman's actor portrait Nick Nolte: No Exit . Nolte will be on hand to present his film, and Jakubisko will receive a Crystal Globe for Outstanding Artistic Contribution to World Cinema.
Other guests include John Sayles, who will attend the festival to present Honeydripper. Melonie Diaz will accompany the presentation of Michel Gondry's Be Kind Rewind . And Saffron Burrows will introduce competition title The Guitar .
The festival program will also feature its traditional Forum of Independents international competition and tributes to Ivan Passer, Arturo Ripstein and Nicolas Roeg, among others.
The festival's industry office also presents annual panel of works in progress from Eastern and Central Europe and will this year inaugurate a new panel called Interfacing with Hollywood for Development, Production and Marketing of your Movies, featuring Hollywood insiders Melinda Jason, Alan Grodin, Suzanne Warren and Justin Manask.
The international film industry will be looking to Karlovy Vary this year as the Czech Audiovisual Producers Association, now led by former Barrandov Studios chief Vladimir Kuba, prepares to announce the results of a new study of the economic impact of filmmaking in the Czech Republic. A 2005 study by Olsberg SPI recommended the country create a 12.5% tax rebate in order to remain competitive with Hungary.
Local producers hope the new study will give them fuel for a new drive at creating a tax incentive after the Czech Ministry of Finance rejected in June a proposal to create a 20% rebate. Prague-based service providers such as Stillking Films and Central Scope are working closely with Czech producers and politicians to make sure the issue is not dropped.