"Before Sunset," the sequel to director Richard Linklater's 1995 romantic comedy "Before Sunrise," which reunites the director with stars Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy, will be the Centerpiece Premiere in the lineup for the Independent Feature Project's 10th annual Los Angeles Film Festival, which runs June 17-26.
The lineup, announced Wednesday, includes 195 films selected from 2,800 submissions and representing 31 countries. "Scrubs" star Zach Braff's writing and directing debut "Garden State" is the opening-night selection and "The Clearing," a thriller starring Sundance Film Festival founder Robert Redford, will close the festival.
Among the 10 entries in competition for the festival's $50,000 narrative film prize are "Bad Meat," a comedy from two writers for the satirical newspaper the Onion; "Men Without Jobs," starring real-life journalist Bonz Malone and musician Ishmael Butler as two men trying to avoid the dreaded 9 to 5; and "Pizza," starring Ethan Embry as a pizza delivery man who bonds with an unpopular teenager.
Eleven films will compete for the festival's $25,000 documentary prize, including "Crazy Legs Conti: Zen and the Art of Competitive Eating," about the life of the record holder for competitive oyster eating; "Another Road Home," following Israeli filmmaker Danae Elon's attempts to reunite with a Palestinian who worked for her family for 20 years; "Up for Grabs," showing the legal wrangling surrounding Barry Bonds' record-setting 73rd home run baseball; and the world premiere of "Rock School," a look at a real-life "School of Rock" in Philadelphia, where the teacher encourages children to embrace their inner rock star.
The International Showcase includes 20 foreign productions competing for audience prizes. "As Life Goes By," from France, documents the passing of seasons and the eccentric residents in a small farm town; "Nina," from Brazil, combines live action with animation to tell the story of an artist's psychological breakdown; and England's "Searching for the Wrong-Eyed Jesus" follows singer-songwriter-philosopher Jim White's tour across the Deep South through juke joints, nighttime baptisms and small-town prisons.
Other events during the festival include Family Day screenings of the Dr. Seuss film "The 5,000 Fingers of Dr. T"; the Rudyard Kipling-meets-"Raiders of the Lost Ark"-themed "Two Brothers"; and the Beatles in "Yellow Submarine." A free outdoor screening of "Krush Groove," the fictionalized story of Russell Simmons and Def Jam records, starring Blair Underwood, Run-DMC and Jam Master Jay, takes place June 25.
Other free screenings include "Chisholm '72 -- Unbought & Unbossed," a documentary about the 1972 presidential campaign by Shirley Chisholm, the first African American woman to run for president; and "The Hunting of the President," about the right's campaign against President Bill Clinton.
Festival guest director Mira Nair will host a two-day retreat that includes screenings of three films that influenced her work: "An Angel at My Table," "Pyaasa" and "Time of the Gypsies." Showcases of high school shorts, music videos and the films of Nigerian director Tunde Kelani round out the festival lineup.
Screening locations and times are available on the website www.lafilmfest.com.