The 33rd Annual Seattle International Film Festival (SIFF) will kick off with Garth Jennings' coming-of-age drama Son Of Rambow and close with the North American premiere of Laurent Tirard's period comedy Moliere.

All in all 405 features will screen during the May 24-Jun 17 festival. Events include the new Planet Cinema sidebar dedicated to films about the natural world, a German spotlight, the Face the Music programme, the Archival Series, the Alternate Cinema section, and the Spawned In Seattle spotlight on locally-themed cinema.

'The festival line-up is incredibly strong this year with an exceptional number of premieres reflecting our aim to highlight world class talent,' SIFF artistic director Carl Spence said.

'SIFF has continued to grow in many exciting new directions, and we are proud to celebrate the many stories being told through film at home and abroad including our inaugural programme, Planet Cinema, focusing on mankind's interaction with the environment.'

World premieres include Sarah Robertson's nature documentary Arctic Tale produced by National Geographic and set to be released through Paramount Vantage, Alexandre Fuchs' street gang documentary Children Of The War (Hijos De La Guerra), and Daniel Waters' comedy Sex And Death 101 starring Simon Baker and Winona Ryder.

Among North American premieres are Timur Bekmambetov's Russian fantasy epic Day Watch, Ventura Pons' Spanish drama Life On The Edge (La Vida Abismal) about Russian Roulette, and Paul Oremland's UK thriller Surveillance starring Tom Harper, Simon Callow and Sean Brendan Brosnan.

Gala selections are Julie Delpy's 2 Days In Paris, the North American Premiere of Jacob Chueng's A Battle Of Wits, Lars von Trier's The Boss Of It All, Lajos Koltai's Evening, and the North American premiere of Poltergay as a special 'Gay-la' event.

Special presentations are David Sington's Apollo missions In The Shadow Of The Moon, the North American Premiere of Fernando Perez's Madrigal, Gary Weimberg's portrait of conscientious objectors in Soldiers Of Conscience, and the US Premiere of Milos Forman's Goya's Ghosts with Natalie Portman and Javier Bardem.

Emerging Masters honours the work of France's Olivier Dahan (La Vie En Rose and La Vie Promise), Israel's Eytan Fox (The Bubble and Yossi & Jagger), Franco-Iranian Rafi Pitts (It's Winter and Season Five), and Mauritania's Abderrahmane Sissako (Bamako and Waiting for Happiness).

Planet Cinema is presented in partnership with Greater Seattle Climate Dialogues and opens with Judith Helfand and Daniel B Gold's behind-the-scenes climate change documentary Everything's Cool.

The line-up includes the US premiere of Gregor Schnitzler's German nuclear fallout drama The Cloud, Larry Fessenden's Alaska-set thriller The Last Winter starring Ron Perlman, and Rob Stewart's animal conservation documentary Sharkwater.

'The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change states that the consequences of global warming could be significantly reduced if we take action,' SIFF guest curator and Sundance senior programmer Caroline Libresco said. 'The time for that action is now and everyone including the film festival community must do their part.'

As previously announced Anthony Hopkins will receive the SIFF Lifetime Achievement Award and present his latest directorial effort, Slipstream. There will also be a tribute to the recently deceased Dutch film-maker Fons Rademakers and a screening of his acclaimed period drama Max Havelaar.

The four competition strands are New Directors Showcase, New American Cinema, Documentary Competition and Short Film Competition, each of which carries a $5,000 prize.

For more details visit the official SIF website at