Kathleen McInnishas been named as the new festival director at Slamdance and will also overseeand initiate new year-round programmes.

The appointmentends a four-month global trawl by the festival's co-founders.

"Kathleen'sreputation in general and her filmmaking experience specifically makes her anatural choice for Slamdance," Peter Baxter, president and one of the fouroriginal co-founders of the festival, said in a statement.

"Her years ofshepherding filmmakers through their festival process, as well as her abilityto speak the language of film from every vantage point, continues the Slamdancetradition of "by filmmakers for filmmakers.""

"Slamdance hasalways been close to my heart; a number of films I produced have played the festival and in my earlyyears as a film journalist I covered their cutting-edge approach to filmexhibition," McInnis said.

"At its core thefestival is about empowering independent filmmakers it is this kinetic andorganic energy that I look forward to using as we move into our second decade."

Baxter will movefrom running the festival to concentrating his efforts on the newly formedSlamdance Media Group.

McInnis has longbeen associated with the Seattle International Film Festival, most recentlyserving as lead film programmer, director of industry programming and directorof publicity and promotion.

Slamdance 2005will take place from Jan 21-28 2005.