The full line-up has beenannounced for the prestigious New York Film Festival, whose 40thedition will kick off on Sept 27 with the North American premiere of AlexanderPayne's About Schmidt, for whichactor Jack Nicholson is already drawing considerable Oscar buzz, and close onOct 13th with Talk To Her, the latest film from longtime NYFF favourite Pedro Almodovar.

The festival'scenterpiece film is Paul Thomas Anderson's Punch-Drunk Love, for which Anderson shared the best director prizeat this year's Cannes Film Festival alongside Korea's Im Kwon-Taek,whose Chihwaseon has also beenchosen by NYFF selectors.

These films join a selectionthat is devoid of world premieres but includes US premieres for many of themost highly-regarded films from other international festivals this year, plusseveral of the most anticipated offerings seen at major events in coming weeks.

Because of the influencethat New York film critics carry, particularly with regard to platformart-house releases in the US, several of NYFF's selections will use theirspotlight to launch their Oscar campaigns.

As always, NYFF has drawnmany of its films from among the competition contenders at the Cannes FilmFestival, among them Aki Kaurismäki's Grand Jury Prize-winner TheMan Without A Past, EliaSuleiman's Divine Intervention, the Dardenne brothers' The Son, Marco Bellocchio's My Mother's Smile, Aleksandr Sokurov's Russian Ark, Manoel de Oliveira's The UncertaintyPrinciple, Jia Zhang-Ke's UnknownPleasures, and AbbasKiarostami's Ten.

To Be And To Have (Etre Et Avoir), a documentary by Nicolas Philibert that was screened out ofcompetition in the main selection, while Abderrahmane Sissako's WaitingFor Happiness appeared in Un Certain Regard where it was named best film by theFIPRESCI international critics' association.

There are also severalhighlights from this year's Berlin Film Festival including PaulGreengrass' Golden Bear-winner Bloody Sunday (an audience winner too at Sundance), BertrandTavernier's Safe Conduct,and the documentary Blind Spot: Hitler's Secretary. Jennifer Dworkin's documentary Love And Diane shared the top prize in the video competition at this year's Locarnofestival in Switzerland.

Other films such as PeterMullan's The Magdalene Sisters, Paul Schrader's Auto Focus, Claire Denis' Friday Night and Tian Zhuangzhuang Springtime In A Small Town and Hong Sang-soo's Turning Gate will be receiving their world premieres at theupcoming Venice and Toronto Film Festivals Otar Iosseliani's MondayMorning will also be shown at nextmonth's Donostia-San Sebastian Film Festival.

For full reviews of many of these selected films click on the Screen Daily search button.


(US distributors, where applicable, are shown inparenthesis)

ABOUT SCHMIDT, Alexander Payne, US (New Line Cinema)
AUTO FOCUS, Paul Schrader, USA, (Sony Pictures Classics)
BLIND SPOT: HITLER'S SECRETARY, Andre Heller and Othmar Schmiderer,Austria (Sony Pictures Classics)
BLOODY SUNDAY, Paul Greengrass, UK/Ireland (Paramount Classics)
CHIHWASEON, Im Kwon-Taek, South Korea
DIVINE INTERVENTION, Elia Suleiman, France/Palestine (Avatar Films)
FRIDAY NIGHT, Claire Denis, France
LOVE AND DIANE, Jennifer Dworkin, US
THE MAN WITHOUT A PAST, Aki Kaurismäki, Finland (Sony Pictures Classics)
MONDAY MORNING, Otar Iosseliani, France/Italy
MY MOTHER'S SMILE, Marco Bellocchio, Italy
PUNCH-DRUNK LOVE, Paul Thomas Anderson, US (Columbia Pictures)
RUSSIAN ARK, Aleksandr Sokurov, Russia/Germany (Wellspring Films)
SAFE CONDUCT, Bertrand Tavernier, France (Empire Films)
THE SON, Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne, Belgium/France(New Yorker Films)
SPRINGTIME IN A SMALL TOWN, Tian Zhuangzhuang, China
TALK TO HER, Pedro Almodovar, Spain (Sony Pictures Classics)
TEN, Abbas Kiarostami, Iran/France
TO BE AND TO HAVE, Nicolas Philibert, France (New Yorker Films)
TURNING GATE, Hong Sang-soo, South Korea
THE UNCERTAINTY PRINCIPLE, Manoel de Oliveira, Portugal/France
UNKNOWN PLEASURES, Jia Zhang-Ke, China/Japan
WAITING FOR HAPPINESS, Abderrahmane Sissako, Mauritania/France (New YorkerFilms)

Special Events:

COME DRINK WITH ME (1965), dir:King Hu, Hong Kong

FAUST (1926) dir: F.W.Murnau, Germany, with live musical accompaniment; world premiere of new score.

TRUE LIVING COLOUR: RACE,FILM, AND TELEVISION IN AMERICA TODAY AND TOMORROW. A panel discussionfeaturing prominent filmmakers and cultural critics.

THE ACTOR AS ACTIVIST:CELEBRATING SHABANA AZMI, a 14-film tribute to the acclaimed Indian actress.

VIEWS FROM THE AVANT-GARDE.Eight programmes of works by various filmmakers.

Selections for the 40th New YorkFilm Festival were made by Richard Peña, chairman of the committee and programmedirector, The Film Society of Lincoln Center; John Anderson, chief film critic,Newsday; Manohla Dargis, filmcritic, Los Angeles Times; KentJones, associate programmer, The Film Society of Lincoln Center; and Dave Kehr,film columnist, The New York Times.