Thefirst Renault French Film Festival will be presented at nine UK cities - London, Birmingham, Manchester, Leeds, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen and Dundee - in March.

Thisfestival combines two previous events, the French Film Festival UK and the Renault French Film Season with UniFrance. "Audiences did not understand why there were twoevents and mixed them up," said festival director Richard Mowe."It makes sense to make an even bigger splash together - and we're lookingforward to unveiling this reinvigorated programme."

Thereare seven films selected for London gala screenings: Olivier Marchal's 36 Quai des Orfevres, Olivier Duscatel and Jacques Martineau's Cockles & Muscles; Danis Tanovic's Hell, DominikMoll's Lemming, Cedric Klapisch's RussianDolls, François Ozon's Time to Leave, and Valerie Lemercier's Palais Royal!

ThePanorama section of the festival will show films by established directors,including Yves Angelo's Grey Souls, PhilippeGarrel's RegularLovers, Jean-Marie Larrieu and Arnaud Larrieu'sTo Paint or Make Love, and Raymond Depardon's The 10thDistrict Court: Moments of Trials.

Thediscovery section will feature new talent, with films including Xavier Giannoli's AnAdventure, Antony Cordier'sCold Showers, and Robin Campillo's They Came Back.

Thefestival's Bertrand Tavernier retrospective will present 11 films including hislatest Holy Lola. Tavernier will alsoconduct masterclasses open to the public.

Thefestival's honorary patron is Sylvain Chomet, whocreated BellevilleRendez-vous, a French animatorcurrently working in the UK.

TheFrench Film Festival UK, Institut françaisdu Royaume-Uni and UniFrance are organizing, with sponsors including Renault, Cineworld Cinemas, Alliance française,Total, Scottish Screen, core cinemas Edinburgh Filmhouse,Glasgow Film Theatre, and London Cine Lumière.

Sisterevent Italian Film Festival UK will move its dates to November 2006 tomake way for the new festival.