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Wednesday, 6 November, 2002, 09:28 GMT
Film festival opens with Brit gala
Dirty Pretty Things stars Amelie's Audrey Tatou
Dirty Pretty Things deals with illegal immigrants
Dirty Pretty Things, the latest film by Dangerous Liaisons and High Fidelity director Stephen Frears, will open the 2002 London Film Festival (LFF) on Wednesday at a Hollywood-style gala.

The film will be unveiled at a gala screening at London's Leicester Square Odeon at 1900 GMT.

The event is to be attended by all of the film's cast, which includes Amelie star Audrey Tatou.

The film, Frears' first since High Fidelity, is about the trials of a group of illegal immigrants living and working in London.

Festival tradition

Hollywood actors Gwyneth Paltrow and Woody Harrelson are expected to attend the gala, as are local actors Nick Moran, Daniel Craig and Ray Winstone.

Tatou and Frears will host a press conference after the film, which will be followed by a party at London's Mezzo restaurant.

It is a tradition of the festival to try and open and close with British films, a spokeswoman says.

Last year the festival opened with Robert Altman's British murder mystery Gosford Park.

Films from 48 countries are being shown this year, with strong showings from South Asia, Argentina, the Czech Republic and Denmark.

Michael Moore's Bowling For Columbine is a festival highlight
Michael Moore, director of Bowling For Columbine
They are being shown throughout the West End and the South Bank Centre, as well as at Brixton's Ritzy cinema and the Tricycle Theatre in Kilburn.

Michael Moore's long-awaited theatrical documentary Bowling For Columbine, about the Colorado school shootings in 1999, is one of the highlights of the festival.

Moore will be hosting a question-and-answer session with film on 11 November at the National Film Theatre.

Eminem's first film, the drama 8 Mile, is also opening at LFF, which is traditionally seen as the last major event in Europe's film festival calendar.


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