Comedy Fest films announced
February 3, 2004
The U.S. Comedy Arts Festival has announced the lineup of films for its 2004 Film Discovery Program.
The Film Discovery Program, a component of the USCAF since 1998, runs concurrently with the festival, March 3-7. The film series is comprised of 22 feature-length films, including documentaries, foreign-language films and eight world premieres, over 20 short films and a Peter Sellers Retrospective.
The Opening Night Film in the program is “Napoleon Dynamite,” by writer-director Jared Hess. The film, which played at the Sundance Festival, is the story of Napoleon, the most eccentric resident of the small town of Prescott, Idaho, and his efforts to help his best friend Pedro become class president.
Among the films having their world premiere in Aspen are “Seeing Other People,” a romantic comedy starring Jay Mohr and Julianne Nicholson and directed by former “Simpsons” supervising producer Wallace Wolodarsky; “Bad Meat,” set in a meat-packing plant; “Stella Street,” a parody of celebrity set in suburban London; and “My Date with Drew,” about an average guy trying to get a date with Drew Barrymore.
Also having their world premieres at the USCAF will be “The Almost Guys,” “Straight Jacket,” “See This Movie” and “Mail Order Bride.”
Among the films in the World Cinema category are “Bright Young Things,” the directorial debut by actor Stephen Fry, set in the high society of 1930s London; “Wilbur Wants to Kill Himself,” by “Italian For Beginners” director Lone Scherfig; and “The Saddest Music in the World,” a quasi-musical starring Isabella Rossellini set in Winnipeg during the Depression.
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Foreign-language films to be screened include the French film “Bon Voyage,” set during World War II and starring Isabelle Adjani and Gerard Depardieu; “Good Bye, Lenin!” a German blockbuster about a mother and son, set against the backdrop of the fall of the Berlin Wall; and “The Green Butchers,” a Danish black comedy about two incompetents opening their own butcher shop.
Other Film Discovery Program presentations include the documentary “Super Size Me,” an irreverent look at obesity and fast food; “Garden State,” an ensemble drama featuring Natalie Portman and Peter Sarsgaard; and short films by Hank Azaria (“Nobody’s Perfect”), Illeana Douglas (“Supermarket”) and Bob Odenkirk (“The Frank International Film Festival”).
The program will present a Peter Sellers Retrospective, with screenings of “Dr. Strangelove,” “The Mouse That Roared” and “The Pink Panther.” A late-night series will include screenings of films, “Airplane!” and “Kentucky Fried Movie,” associated with Jim Abrahams, David Zucker and Jerry Zucker. The three will be presented with the AFI Filmmaker Award in a live event at the festival.
For a full Film Discovery Program lineup, go to http://www.uscaf.com.
Stewart Oksenhorn’s e-mail address is email@example.com