Inaugural Drake film fest gets June berth

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ROME -- The first Drake International Film Festival focusing on independent film and projects using cutting-edge technologies will take place in June near Naples, organizers said Thursday.

The festival, which will be headed by longtime Venice Film Festival industry section head Laura Marcellino, will feature 12 in-competition films and more than 300 screenings June 23-30. Organizers vow to have at least six world premieres at the event, along with visits from several A-list Hollywood talents.

The festival joins an already crowded film festival calendar in Italy, including Sicily's Taormina Film, also held in June, the Venice Film Festival, the RomaCinemaFest, the Turin Film Festival, and a host of regional or niche events.

One of the festival's main drawing points will be its stunning setting. The sprawling and decadent Reggia di Caserta, a World Heritage site since 1996, was built in 1752 as the home of King Charles VII of Naples.

The official launch of the festival will take place later this month at the Berlin film festival, with promotional events also scheduled for the Festival de Cannes in May and at international fairs in Vienna, Madrid, Prague, Gothenburg, and Milan.

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