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Friday, 31 August, 2001, 12:15 GMT 13:15 UK
French festival salutes Hollywood
Heath Ledger presents A Knight's Tale
Heath Ledger presents A Knight's Tale
British actress Elizabeth Hurley and Australian actor Heath Ledger will be the star attractions at the 27th Deauville Festival of American Cinema which opens on Friday.

Hurley is expected to attend the screening of her cop drama Double Whammy as the official opening feature of the nine-day event.

And on Saturday, upcoming heart-throb Ledger will be the talk of the northern French resort as jousting yarn A Knight's Tale features as the day's main film.

Elizabeth Hurley
Elizabeth Hurley's film opens the festival

Deauville traditionally attracts some of Hollywood's biggest names, who come to help promote their movies in Europe.

This year is no exception with the likes of Julianne Moore, Johnny Depp, Halle Berry, Haley Joel Osment and Christopher Walken also expected to attend.

They, and numerous directors and industry representatives, will be on hand to present festival highlights such AI: Artificial Intelligence, Swordfish, American Pie 2 and Legally Blonde.

Tributes

Opening movie Double Whammy also stars Pulp Fiction actor Steve Buscemi.

The film is a drama about a world-weary police detective who fights to restore his reputation after failing to stop a massacre in a fast food restaurant.

Artificial Intelligence
Science fiction thriller Artificial Intelligence is a highlight

Meanwhile, A Knight's Tale, which opens in the UK this weekend, is a tongue-in-cheek adventure about a young 14th Century peasant fighting his way to fame and fortune in the jousting arena.

Special tributes this year go to actors Burt Reynolds, Julianne Moore, Christopher Walken, director Oliver Stone and producer Joel Silver.

Competition

Moore's World Traveler, directed by Bart Freundlich, will be one of the movies receiving its world première at Deauville.

Michael Cimino, who directed The Deer Hunter and Heaven's Gate, will be awarded a literature prize for his first novel Big Jane.

There will be 10 movies competing for awards at Deauville this year, including the festival's Grand Prix.

Only independently made films are allowed to compete, which often leads to previously unknown talent coming to light.

This year's potential highlights include Bartleby by Jonathan Parker, Marc Levin's Brooklyn Babylon and the Deep End by Scott McGehee.

See also:

26 Jan 01 | Entertainment
The buzz at Sundance
01 Sep 00 | Entertainment
Hollywood comes to France
09 May 01 | Film
Can-can kickstarts Cannes
07 Feb 01 | Entertainment
Berlin film festival opens
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