Michael Moore picks two films to open fest

'Kids,' 'Nowhere Boy' to kick off Traverse City event

Michael Moore has lined up two films -- Focus' lesbian family dramedy "The Kids Are All Right" and the Weinstein Co.'s "Nowhere Boy," a look at John Lennon's childhood -- to open his sixth annual Traverse City Film Festival.

Moore originally created the fest, held in Traverse City, Mich., to bring films that had gotten limited distribution to the remote lakeside town 250 miles northwest of Detroit. This year's event runs July 27-Aug. 1.

Although "Kids," which opened in seven theaters last weekend, looks like a sure bet to expand throughout the country, "Boy," which the Weinsteins acquired in March, won't be released until October.

Along with "Boy," the fest will pay tribute to the Beatles by screening "A Hard Day's Night" (1964) and "Help!" (1965).

Continuing with a music theme, the fest will offer the documentary "Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage," a chronicle of the heavy metal band; Radu Milaileanu's French feature "The Concert," about a former conductor of the Bolshoi orchestra; and the 1928 silent film "The Last Command," accompanied by the Alloy Orchestra.

The lineup also includes Sabina Guzzanti's "Draquila -- Italy Trembles"; Flip Remunda and Vit Kusak's "Czech Peace"; a salute to Cuban film; and two 3D titles, "Cane Toads: The Conquest" and the concert doc "U2 3D."

Sony Pictures Classics co-head Michael Barker and Tom Bernard have been tapped as honorees.

The University of Michigan also is partnering with the fest for the first time to offer filmmaking classes.
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