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Tuesday, 30 July, 2002, 17:27 GMT 18:27 UK
Venice Festival line-up revealed
Salma Hayek
Salma Hayek plays artist Frida Kahlo in the opening film
A movie about surrealist Mexican artist Frida Kahlo is to compete with the latest Stephen Daldry film for the Golden Lion at this year's Venice Film Festival.

The festival, which runs from 29 August to 8 September, kicks off this year with Frida, which stars Salma Hayek as Kahlo.

Directed by Broadway veteran Julie Taymor, the film co-stars Edward Norton, Ashley Judd, Geoffrey Rush and Antonio Banderas as Kahlo's husband Diego Rivera.

Julianne Moore will be attending to promote her new film The Hours, director Daldry's first film since Billy Elliot.

Sophia Loren
Sophia Loren has not attended for 20 years
Meryl Streep and Nicole Kidman also star in the drama, which focuses on three women in different eras profoundly affected by the works of Virginia Woolf.

Sam Mendes' The Road To Perdition is also competing for the top prize at the festival. It stars Tom Hanks as a hitman in 1930s Chicago.

Co-starring Paul Newman and Jude Law, the film has been a big success both critically and commercially in the US and is an early front-runner for next year's Oscars.

They will be competing against films from South Korea, Italy, Russia and Japan for the top prize.


It's a miracle that we've been able to put together an interesting, rich and varied programme like this

Moritz De Hadeln, Festival Director
Alongside Mendes and Daldry, the other British film-makers in competition are Peter Mullan with The Magdalene Sisters and Stephen Frear with Dirty Pretty Things.

Tom Hanks, Julianne Moore, Salma Hayek and Sophia Loren are all expected to attend the festival.

Loren will be attending her first Venice Film Festival for 20 years. She is starring in Between Strangers, directed by her son Eduardo Ponti, which will be screened during the fortnight.

"It's a miracle that we've been able to put together an interesting, rich and varied programme like this in little more than four months," said festival director Moritz De Hadeln, who was previously in charge of the Berlin Film Festival.

Gala dinner

About 143 films will be screened at the festival, including the 21 competing for the Golden Lion and a further 17 in contention for the new San Marco award in the festival's Countercurrent section.

These include Steven Soderbergh's latest, Full Frontal, a low-budget, unofficial sequel to Sex, Lies and Videotape.

Julia Roberts stars in the film, which is already attracting good word-of-mouth reviews.

Other highlights will include a gala dinner to honour legendary Italian film-maker Michaelangelo Antonioni on 5 September.

This year's jury will be headed by Chinese actress Gong Li, who won the Best Actress award at Venice in 1992 for The Story Of Qiu Ju.

See also:

28 Jul 02 | Entertainment
29 Aug 01 | Entertainment
22 Mar 02 | Entertainment
28 Aug 01 | Entertainment
29 Jul 01 | Entertainment
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