Diego Luna's 'Abel' to open SANFIC

'Octubre,' 'Carancho' and 'To the Sea' among highlights

BUENOS AIRES -- Mexican actor Diego Luna's "Abel," his second feature as a director following his documentary film "J.C. Chavez," will open the sixth edition of the Santiago International Film Festival.

Co-produced by John Malkovich, the film had its premiere at Sundance this year, and was selected to participate at Cannes last May.

The film's plot centers on a 9-year-old kid who assumes the father role in his house once his dad leaves, only things change when he unexpectedly returns home.

SANFIC's lineup will include 120 films with the festival expecting about 60 international distributors and producers to attend. SANFIC will take place Aug. 17-23, throughout 15 different venues.

Some of the highlights include Cannes' Un Certain Regard entries "Octubre" and "Carancho," from Peru and Argentina respectively, this year's winner at Rotterdam and Bafici, "To the Sea," and Tribeca's frontrunners "When We Leave" from Germany, and "Monica & David," a documentary by Cuban-American helmer Alexandra Codina.

The International Competition jury is made up of film critic Robert Koehler, European filmmakers Isabel Coixet and Claire Denis (both will present retrospectives of their work), and Abel Ferrara, who will bring his latest pic "Napoli Napoli Napoli."

"We're very proud of this year's jury. The presence of such important names confirms SANFIC as a main entry in the international film calendar, and one of the most important festivals in Latin American," SANFIC's founder and artistic director Carlos Nunez said.

As this year marks Mexico's Bicentennial, the festival's What's New in Latin America section will program Berlinale entry "Revolucion," a collective film made of 10 shorts by Mexican filmmakers such as Carlos Reygadas, Fernando Eimbcke and Rodrigo Garcia. The film, which addresses the country's current situation, also features a segment directed by Gael Garcia Bernal.

The 6th edition of the Santiago International Film Festival is organized by Corpartes in conjunction with Storyboard Media.