The 20th annual Florida Film Festival, sponsored by Full Sail University, will take place April 8 through 17, 2011, and this year’s lineup features more than 160 films from 25 countries with 43 female directors.

The documentary, Project Nim, from Academy Award®-winning filmmaker, James Marsh (Man on Wire), will serve as the Festival’s Opening Night Film on April 8. Humorous, eye-opening, and thought-provoking, Project Nim tells the tale of a chimp taken from its mother and raised as a human in an upper west side brownstone in 1970s New York.

“We’re excited to launch our 20th edition of the Festival with this sensational documentary,” said Henry Maldonado, President of Enzian and the Festival. “We opened the first Florida Film Festival with the documentary, A Brief History of Time, and it’s meaningful for us salute that moment 20 years later.”

The lineup of films selected for the Documentary and Narrative Feature Film categories of the American Independent Competition include 11 filmmakers making their feature directorial debuts and six female directors represented among the 10 narrative films and 10 documentaries.

Narrative features include the following:

Dog Sweat – East Coast Premiere (Directed by Hossein Keshavarz)
Fanny, Annie & Danny – (Directed by Chris Brown)
Hamill – (Directed by Oren Kaplan)
The Happy Poet – Florida Premiere (Directed by Paul Gordon)
Kinyarwanda – East Coast (Directed by Alrick Brown)
Norman – Southeast Premiere (Directed by Jonathan Segal)
Silver Tongues – East Coast Premiere (Directed by Simon Arthur)
This Narrow Place – World Premiere (Directed by Sooney Kadouh
Without – East Coast Premiere and 2nd US Showing (Directed by Mark Jackson)
Wuss – East Coast Premiere (Directed by Clay Liford)

Documentary features include the following:

Bobby Fischer against the World – Regional Premiere (Directed by Liz Garbus)
Chekhov for Children – Southeast Premiere (Directed by Sasha Waters Freyer)
Journey from Zanskar – Southeast Premiere (Directed by Frederick Marx)
Holy Wars – East Coast Premiere (Directed by Stephen Marshall)
Louder Than a Bomb – Florida Premiere (Directed by Greg Jacobs and Jon Siskel)
Made in India – Florida Premiere (Directed by Rebecca Haimowitz and Vaishali Sinha)
mindFlux – Southeast Premiere (Directed by Ryan Kerrison)
A Matter of Taste: Serving Up Paul Liebrandt – Florida Premiere (Directed by Sally Rowe)
Stuff– World Premiere (Directed by Lawrence Johnson)
Windfall – Southeast Premiere (Directed by Laura Israel)

The 20 films will be eligible for up to three awards each: a Grand Jury award for best film in that category, a Special Jury award given at the jury’s discretion for exceptional achievements, and an Audience award determined by audience votes.

This year’s Festival will feature 21 World Premieres:

Features include the following:

A Beautiful Belly (Directed by Andrew Kenneth Gay)
TANZANIA a Friendship Journey (Directed by Sylvia Caminer)
This Narrow Place (Directed by Sooney Kadouh)
Stuff (Directed by Lawrence Johnson)

Shorts include the following:

La Salle de Jeux (The Playroom) (Directed by Tim Miller)
Thule (Directed by Robert Scott Wildes)
The Thief (Directed by Rachel Weisz)
Victims of Gravity (Directed by Vlady Valentin Oszkiel)
California Romanza (Directed by Eva Mendes)
The Candidate (Directed by David Karlak)
The Deep (Directed by PES)
Tales of Mere Existence: How to Be a Man (Directed by Lev Yilmaz)
Tales of Mere Existence: How You May Fall for a Girl on Facebook (Directed by Lev Yilmaz)
Nosy Bear (Directed by Fran Krause)
Snot Bubble Boy (Directed by John Derevlany)
Bad Influences (Directed by Kate Emery)
A Coincidence of Sorts (Directed by Edgar Jorge)
City of Murals (Directed by Ricky Rose)
I’m Sorry I Forgot (Directed by Jason Rosette)
Deadliest Throw (Directed by Joe York)

This year’s Festival will feature four (4) North American Premieres:

Shorts include the following:

Steve Winwood: English Soul (Directed by Paul Bernays)
Judas and Jesus (Directed by Claudia Romero and Olaf Encke)
Pinion (Directed by Asuka Sylvie)
Shift (Directed by Anu Aun)

This year’s Festival will feature US Premieres:

Shorts include the following:

Showtajm (Directed by Lars Arrhenius and Daniel Westlund)
Cosmic Jungle (Directed by Marie Ayme, Martin Brunet, Alexandre Cazals, Sébastien de Oliveira Bispo, Fabrice Fiteni, Mathieu Garcia and Alexandre Vial)
B/W Races (Directed by Jacopo Martinoni)
Civilization (Directed by Claude Duty)
Mi Otra Mitad (My Other Half) (Directed by Beatriz Sanchis)
Face (Directed by Adele Wilkes)

2011 Oscar® winner and nominees in this year’s Festival:

God of Love (Directed by Luke Matheny) – Academy Award®-winner for Best Live Action Short Film
The Gruffalo (Directed by Jakob Schuh and Max Lang) – Academy Award®-nominee for Best Animated Short Film
Incendies (Directed by Denis Villeneuve) – Academy Award®-Nominee for Best Foreign Language Film

This year’s Festival will feature films directed by, produced by, and/or starring:

Richard Jenkins (Norman), Adam Goldberg (Norman), Tony Hale (Wuss), Julia Stiles (Sexting), Denis Leary (Inside Out), Rachel Weisz (The Thief), Joel Edgerton (The Thief), Rosemarie DeWitt (The Thief), Eva Mendes (California Romanza), Christina Ricci(California Romanza), Ray Liotta (Snowmen), Christopher Lloyd (Snowmen), Ashley Judd (Ruby in Paradise), Natalie Portman (Hesher), Joseph Gordon-Levitt (Hesher), Rainn Wilson (Hesher, Super), Gerard Depardieu (Potiche), Catherine Deneuve (Poitche), Ellen Page (Super), Liv Tyler (Super), Kevin Bacon (Super), John C. Reilly (Terri).

Continuing its mission to provide a platform for the immense pool of Floridian filmmakers, as well as spotlight films that feature Florida themes, the Festival will screen one of its largest selections of films with Florida ties. The Fabulous Florida Films program will include a special collection of films grouped under the title “Visions of Florida: A Native Tribute.” This four-film retrospective series is hand-picked by film critic and Film Society of Lincoln Center programmer, Scott Foundas, and showcases “An Afternoon With” special event featuring Victor Nunez with his 1993 critically-acclaimed Ruby in Paradise.

The Fabulous Florida Films program includes:

River of Grass (1994) (Directed by Kelly Reichardt)
The Yearling (1964) (Directed by Clarence Brown)
Ruby in Paradise (1993) (Directed by Victor Nunez)
Vernon, Florida (1981) (Directed by Errol Morris)
Square Grouper: The Godfathers of Ganja (Directed by Billy Corben)
Bots High (Directed by Joey Daoud)
A Beautiful Belly (Directed by Andrew Kenneth Gay)
The Weird World of Blowfly (Directed by Jonathan Furmanski)
Werner Herzog Eats His Shoe (Directed by Les Blank)
Mr. Happy Man (Directed by Matt Morris)
Kodachrome (Directed by Xander Robin)
Midnight Son (Directed by Scott Leberecht)
TANZANIA A Friendship Journey

International Documentary Shorts program:
A new program to this year’s Festival, this selection will feature short form documentary films from Ireland, Sweden, Japan, and Australia:

Tussilago (Directed by Jonas Odell)
Bye Bye Now! (Directed by Aideen O’Sullivan and Ross Whitaker)
Grandpa’s Wet Dream (Directed by Chihiro Amemiya)
Bathing Micky (Directed by Frida Kempff)
Face (Directed by Adele Wilkes)

Food Films
Championing the mission of presenting the very best in cinematic and culinary arts, this year’s Festival will feature a diverse lineup of food-themed films. This will include a special guest appearance from Paul Liebrandt, renowned New York chef and main subject in the documentary, A Matter of Taste: Serving Up Paul Liebrandt.

The Food Film program includes:

A Matter of Taste: Serving Up Paul Liebrandt (Directed by Sally Rowe)
Cut/Chop/Cook (Directed by Joe York)
Southern Foodways Alliance: New Works by Joe York (Directed by Joe York) *featuring five (5) documentary shorts by the director

Free and Open to the Public Screenings:

Music Double Feature:
The One Man Beatles: Something About Emitt Rhodes (Directed by Cosimo Messeri)
Steve Winwood: English Soul (Directed by Paul Bernays)

Outdoor Popcorn Flick in the Park Showcase:
The Yearling (Directed by Clarence Brown)

Italian Cinema Night program sponsored by Olive Garden:

Amarcord (1973) (Directed by Federico Fellini)
La Pivellina (Directed by Tizza Covi and Rainer Frimmel)

The Festival’s Closing Night Retro film will feature a 50th anniversary screening of Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1961) (Directed by Blake Edwards).

The 2011 film program and schedule is available to view online.

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