The Sundance Film Festivalunleashed a typically challenging American and world cinema competition line-uptoday [Monday] that bore the festival's hallmarks of eclectic,socially-conscious story-telling.

The American dramatic andcompetition each feature 16 titles from more than 1,760 submissions, and arematched this year by their world cinema counterparts

Since launching in 2005 thenumber of entries in the world cinema documentary strand has risen from 12 to16 entries. Each of the world cinema documentary and dramatic categoriescontains 16 titles culled from more than 1,300 submissions.

The American categoriescover a dynamic slate ranging from documentaries like Lauren Greenfield'seating disorder study Thin,Patrick Creadon's paean to New York Times crossword chief Will Shortz Wordplay and James Longley's account of contemporary Iraq IraqIn Fragments, to narrative taleslike Richard Glatzer and Wash Westmoreland's tale of disaffected Latinos in Quinceanera, Hilary Brougher's procedural mystery StephanieDaley and Joey Lauren Adams' accountof addiction in Come Early Morning.

Diversity is writ large inthe world cinema categories, where documentaries like Christian Frei's TheGiant Buddhas (Switzerland), anaccount of the Taliban's destruction of the giant icons, and Tin Dirdamal'sMexican title about the heartbreak of immigration No One vie for attention with dramatic competitioncontenders such as Christoffer Boe's Danish tale of an amnesiac pianist in Allegro and Zhang Yuan's Chinese entry Little Red Flowers, about the struggle to conform in apost-revolutionary orphanage.

"I've gone to Sarajevo andtrawled through numerous international festivals and my team has covered theglobe sourcing provocative entries for the festival," Sundance festival directorGeoff Gilmore said. "These films are about risk-taking, just as they are withthe American entries, and that's what defines Sundance. We've got a lot ofmid-career international auteurs here like Christoffer Boe and Fabian Bielinsky[The Aura, Argentina] and itmakes for an extraordinary programme."

Gilmore also pointed to athriving market when he said that for the first time both Fortissimo chiefs Wouter Barendrecht and Michael Werner would beflying into Utah, as would top brass from Wild Bunch, Celluloid Dreams andFlach Pyramide.

As far as the US line-upgoes, Gilmore said the roster was as strong as ever, and bristled with tales ofmoral conflict, immigration, and social alienation, among other subjects."These films are aesthetic, personal accounts of the social milieu and thedetail and nuance makes them special. A lot of these entries came to us fromout of the blue and that freshness takes us back to our roots as a festival ofindependent cinema."

Overall 120 features wereselected for the festival, which runs from Jan 19-29 2006. The list, more ofwhich will be unveiled this week, includes 85 world premieres, 18 NorthAmerican premieres and 14 US premieres representing 29 countries with 48first-time feature filmmakers.

Entries were selected from3,148 feature submissions composed of 1,764 US features and 1,384 internationalfeature films. By comparison the 2005 festival received 1,385 US submissionsand 1,228 international entries.

"Every category is filledwith fresh, original voices with quality storytelling that take risks and willnot be mistaken for typical mainstream fare," Gilmore added.

Festival films screen innine sections: Documentary Competition, Dramatic Competition, World CinemaDocumentary Competition, World Cinema Dramatic Competition, Spectrum, Frontier,Park City at Midnight, Sundance Collection and Premieres. Feature films selected for Spectrum,Frontier and Park City at Midnight categories will be announced on Nov 29, thePremieres section will be announced on Nov 30, and the Short Film programmewill be announced on Dec 5.

Documentary Competition:

A Lion In The House

Dirs: Steven Bogner, JuliaReichert
Five families - each with a child fighting cancer - navigate the ups and downsof treatment over six years.

World Premiere

American Blackout

Dir: Ian Inaba

Recounts the career of USDemocratic Representative Cynthia McKinney, encompassing civil rights andrecent Presidential elections.

World Premiere

An Unreasonable Man

Dirs: Henriette Mantel andStephen Skrovan

Rarely seen archival footageand copious interviews trace the many faces of consumer advocate andPresidential contender Ralph Nader.

World Premiere

Crossing Arizona

Dir: Joseph Mathew

Explores a range of humanstories sparked by Arizona's illegal immigrant crisis.

World Premiere

God Grew Tired Of Us

Dir: Christopher Quinn

Four boys from Sudan embarkon a journey to America after years of wandering Sub-Saharan Africa in searchof safety.

World Premiere

Ground Truth: After TheKilling Ends

Dir: Patricia Foulkrod

Investigates how themilitary trains US soldiers for war, the reality of combat in Iraq, and theeffects of war on homecoming veterans.

World Premiere

Iraq In Fragments

Dir: James Longley

Contemporary Iraqi lifeillustrated through a trio of stories set against the backdrop of war,occupation and ethnic tension.

World Premiere

Small Town Gay Bar

Dir: Malcom Ingram

Deep South tale of thestruggle for expression in the face of ignorance, hypocrisy and oppression.

World Premiere

So Much So Fast

Dirs: Steven Ascher andJeanne Jordan

The brother of a man withLou Gehrig's disease strives to find a cure, while the afflicted man's loverhas a decision to make.

World Premiere


Dir: Lauren Greenfield

Explores the struggle facedby four women with anorexia and bulimia at a residential facility for eatingdisorders in South Florida.

World Premiere

'Tis Autumn - The SearchFor Jackie Paris

Dir: Raymond De Felitta

Analyses the rise of jazzvocalist Jackie Paris and asks how much we need to know of an artist's personalstory to appreciate their art.

World Premiere

The Trials Of Darryl Hunt

Dirs: Ricki Stern and AnnieSundberg

The wrongful conviction of ablack man for a white woman's rape and murder provide a launch-pad for thisexamination of criminal justice.

World Premiere

TV Junkie

Dir: Michael Cain

Forty-six-year-old Rickfilms more than 5,000 hours of home video to discover his special purpose inlife.

World Premiere

Wide Awake

Dir: Alan Berliner

First-person account of thefilmmaker's struggle with insomnia.

World Premiere


Dir: Patrick Creadon

An in-depth look at TheNew York Times crossword puzzle, itseditor Will Shortz, and his loyal fan base.

World Premiere

The World According ToSesame Street

Dirs: Linda GoldsteinKnowlton and Linda Hawkins Costigan

Behind-the-scenes look athow to adapt the children's television show for audiences in the world'spolitical hotspots.

World Premiere

Dramatic Competition:

A Guide To RecognizingYour Saints

Dir: Dito Montiel

A writer recounts histeenage experiences in a tough 1980s New York neighbourhood.

World Premiere

Come Early Morning

Dir: Joey Lauren Adams

A Southern woman tries toescape her addictions and self-destructive behaviour in order to find truelove.

World Premiere

Flannel Pajamas

Dir: Jeff Lipsky

A magical evening in a dinersparks a challenging marriage between two New Yorkers.

World Premiere


Dir: Paul Fitzgerald

An ambitious small towndistrict attorney hears the Governor has exonerated a death row inmate whomhe'd prosecuted years before.

World Premiere

Half Nelson

Dir: Ryan Fleck

An inner-city junior highschool teacher with a drug habit befriends one of his students after shediscovers his secret.

World Premiere

Hawk Is Dying

Dir: Julian Goldberger

A Florida car upholsterertries to inject adventure into his life by training a wild red-tailed hawk.

World Premiere

In Between Days

Dir: So Yong Kim

A recent Korean immigrantfalls in love with her best and only friend, creating a troublesomerelationship.

World Premiere

Puccini For Beginners

Dir: Maria Maggenti

Screwball comedy about alesbian New York writer on the rebound who falls into two surprising andcomplicated love affairs.

World Premiere


Dirs: Richard Glatzer andWash Westmoreland

Disaffected Latino teenagerscome of age in a gentrifying community in Los Angeles' Echo Park district.

World Premiere

Right At Your Door

Dir: Chris Gorak

A married couple tries tosurvive after multiple dirty bombs are detonated in Los Angeles.

World Premiere

Dir: Laurie Collyer
A released female convict struggles to adapt to life without bars.
World Premiere


Dir: Hadjii
A college student staggers towards adulthood, despite a cast of eccentricrelatives, prankster classmates and reprobates.

World Premiere


Dir: Bob Goldthwait

An impulsive sexualencounter opens the door to a dark comedy about the complexities of honesty.

World Premiere

Steel City

Dir: Brian Jun

In a small Midwest town twoirresponsible brothers come to terms with their lives after their father isimprisoned for killing a woman.

World Premiere

Stephanie Daley

Dir: Hilary Brougher

A pregnant forensicpsychologist is hired to investigate a teenager's denial that she concealed herpregnancy and committed infanticide.

World Premiere

Wristcutters - A LoveStory

Dir: Goran Dukic

Offbeat comedy, love storyand road movie populated with a cast of dead characters.

World Premiere

World Cinema DocumentaryCompetition:

5 Days/Israel

Dir: Yoav Shamir

Chronicles the evacuation ofJewish settlers from the Gaza Strip in August 2005 to make way forPalestinians.

North American Premiere

Angry Monk - ReflectionsOn Tibet/Switzerland

Dir: Luc Schaedler

Portrait of the rebelliousTibetan monk Gendun Choephel.

North American Premiere

Black Gold/UK

Dirs: Marc Francis, NickFrancis

Follows the world of coffeeand trade from the struggling Ethiopian bean grower to your coffee cup.

World Premiere

By The Ways, A JourneyWith William Eggleston/France

Dirs: Cedric Laty, VincentGerard

Investigates the life ofWilliam Eggleston, considered by many to be the father of colour photography.

North American Premiere

Dear Pyongyang/Japan

Dir: Yang Yonghi

A Korean-Japanese daughterexplores her father's fiercely political and potentially home-wrecking loyaltyto North Korea.

North American Premiere

The Giant Buddhas/Switzerland

Dir: Christian Frei

Explores the destruction ofthe famous Buddha statues in Afghanistan.

US Premiere


Dir: Julian Temple

England's annual GlastonburyFestival captured over the last 30 years.

World Premiere

I Is For India/England-Germany-Italy

Dir: Sandhya Suri

A tale of migration andbelonging, told primarily through Super 8 films and audio letters sent betweenIndia and England.

World Premiere

In The Pit/Mexico

Dir: Juan Carlos Rulfo

Myth, hope and daily lifecombine in this chronicle of construction workers on Mexico City's Perifericofreeway.

World Premiere

Into Great Silence/Germany

Dir: Philip Groening

The first film ever toexamine life inside the Grande Chartreuse, the mother house of the legendaryCarthusian Order.

US Premiere


Dir: Rex Bloomstein

How the town of Mauthausen,formerly the site of a German concentration camp, faces up to its dark past.

North American Premiere

No One/Mexico

Dir:Tin Dirdamal

A Central American immigrantforced to leave her family in search of a better life encounters a nightmare enroute to the US.

US Premiere

The Short Life Of JoseAntonio Gutierrez/Germany

Dir:Heidi Specogna

The tale of the first USsoldier to die in Iraq reveals the story of a Guatemalan child drawn into warby the promise of a Green card.

World Premiere


Dir:Brian Hill

Female inmates at England'sDownview prison sing about their lives and the crimes in a musical performance.

North American Premiere

Unfolding Florence: TheMany Lives Of Florence Broadhurst/Australia

Dir: Gillian Armstrong

Recounts in colourful detailthe late blossoming of flamboyant design pioneer Florence Broadhurst.

World Premiere

Viva Zapatero/Italy

Dir:Sabina Guzzanti

A critical and playful lookat how censorship in Italy under Berlusconi contrasts with other Europeannations.

North American Premiere

World Cinema DramaticCompetition:

13 Tzameti/France

Dir:Gela Babluani

A man follows instructionsintended for someone else and falls into a clandestine world of mental chaos.

North American Premiere


Dir:Christoffer Boe

A famous amnesiac pianistreturns to his native Copenhagen where a mysterious messenger leads him backinto his forgotten past.

North American Premiere

The Aura/Argentina

Dir:Fabian Bielinsky

An introverted taxidermistcarries out his perfect robbery.

North American Premiere

The Blossoming Of MaximoOliveros/Philippines

Dir:Auraeus Solito

A youngster's devotion tohis family of small-time criminals in a Manila slum is undermined when hebefriends a principled policeman.

US Premiere

Eve & The Fire Horse/Canada

Dir:Julia Kwan

A precocious nine-year-oldgrowing up in a Vancouver Chinese immigrant community experiences culturalconfusion.

US Premiere


Dir:Jasmila Zbanic

A woman and her daughterfight to survive in the painful aftermath of the Balkan war.

World Premiere

The House Of Sand/Brazil

Dir:Andrucha Waddington

The story of a womanspanning three generations.

US Premiere

Kiss Me Not On The Eyes/Lebanon

Dir:Jocelyne Saab

An educated young Egyptianwoman defends her artistic integrity as a dancer and her social independence.

US Premiere

Little Red Flowers/China

Dir:Zhang Yuan

A parable about thecomplexities of being forced to fit in to a regimented society inpost-revolutionary China.

World Premiere


Dir:Claudia Llosa

Madeinusa is a sweet girlwho lives in an isolated village in Peru. Everything changes when a geologistarrives from Lima.

World Premiere

No. 2/New Zealand

Dir:Toa Fraser

Nanna Maria's family hasforgotten how to party, but Nanna plans to inject some ife into her loved ones.

World Premiere.

One Last Dance/Singapore

Dir:Max Makowski

An assassin is hired to killthe men responsible for kidnapping an important man's son.

World Premiere

The Peter Pan Formula/South Korea

Dir:Cho Chang-Ho

An adolescent boy confrontspremature independence as his mother lies in a coma and he experiences thefirst tugs of sexual desire.

North American Premiere


Dir:Fernando Leon de Aranoa

Two women form anunbreakable bond despite their differences as they fight to make ends meet inthe big city.

US Premiere

Solo Dios Sabe/Brazil-Mexico

Dir:Carlos Bolado

High jinks in South Americaas a young Brazilian art student crosses paths with a roguish Mexicanjournalist.

World Premiere

Son Of Man/South Africa

Dir:Mark Dornford-May

Jesus' life story translatedto modern-day South Africa.

World Premiere

A complete list of films andother information is available at