'Dance Machine' to open Phuket film fest


BANGKOK, Thailand -- The inaugural Phuket Film Festival will be held Oct. 20-27 at the popular Thai beach site that was hit hard during the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, organizers said Monday in Bangkok.

Spanish film "Dance Machine" will open the fest, with director Oscar Aibar slated to attend. The closing film will be the Asian premiere of director Julie Taymor's homage to the 1960s and The Beatles, "Across the Universe," which had its world premiere at Toronto Film Festival in September.

Thirty-four films from 15 countries will be presented at the festival, with several thousand attendees expected, organizers said. There will be no official jury for this year's festival, but a "People's Choice Awards" given out at the end of the festival.