15 films to vie for San Sebastian award

Zabaltegi-New Directors prize worth $120,000

MADRID -- Fifteen films from 17 countries including the United States, Romania, China, Chile and Denmark will contend for the €90,000 ($120,000) Zabaltegi-New Directors Award at next month's San Sebastian International Film Festival, organizers announced on Monday.

Representing the U.S. will be debutante director Shawn Ku's "Beautiful Boy" starring Maria Bello and Michael Sheen as the parents of a youth who carries out a mass shooting at a university.

Two films from host country Spain are also in the lineup: "Blog", by Elena Trape, about a group of upper middle-class girls with a secret plan, and "Stars to Wish Upon", by Mikel Rueda, which tells the story of a mother who loses her child in the Spanish Civil War.

Other western European productions include France's "Elsewhere" by Frederic Pelle; the Belgian-German co-production "Marieke, Marieke", by Sophie Schoukens; "Dusk", by Dutch director Hanro Smitsman, and from Denmark, Mikkel Munch-Fals' "Nothing's All Bad."

From eastern Europe are Polish director Marcin Wrona's organized crime drama "The Christening"; Bulgarian entry "Shelter" by Dragomir Sholev; and "Principles of Life" by Romanian Constanin Popescu.

Latin American entries are the Uruguayan-Spanish co-production "A Useful Life" by Federico Veiroj; "Lucia" from Chilean helmer Niles Atallah; "The Colours of the Mountain", a Colombian-Panamanian co-production by Carlos Cesar Arbelaez; and the Guatemalan-French-Mexican production "Marimbas from Hell" by Julio Hernandez Cordon.

The lone Asian entry is "Single Man" from Chinese director Hao Jie.

The festival runs from Sept. 17-25 in the northern Spanish beach resort city of San Sebastian.
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