An initiative to create a multi-territory festival aiming to use film to promote awareness for human rights issues has garnered glittering support from the film industry.

Dubbed Europa-Europa, the start-up event has brought together a leading director from each participating country's industry with the inaugural edition aiming to draw attention to the human rights issues surrounding racism.

The directors signed up to participate include the UK's Ken Loach, Michael Haneke from Austria, Germany's Doris Dorrie and Spain's Bigas Lunas. Italy's Bernardo Bertolucci and France's Bertrand Tavernier also join the outfit which will be presided over by Jorge Semprun.

The event, which takes place March 21-22, will screen three films a day and follow each with a debate between all the cinemas linked by satellite. The six films designed to spark debate are: Michel Ocelot's Kirikou Et La Sorciere, Stephen Frears' My Beautiful Laundrette, Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne's La Promesse, Enzo D'Alo's La Mouette Et Le Chat, Bourlem Guerdjou's Vivre Au Paradis and Alexandre Arcady's La Bas, Mon Pays. The films will be screened in Vienna, Frankfurt, the UK, Barcelona, Milan and Lille.