European 'Sundance' Les Arcs Film Fest Kicks Off in French Resort Town

Event opens on Dec. 11 with the premiere of Iciar Bollain’s "Even the Rain," starring Gael Garcia Bernal and Luis Tosar.


PARIS -- European indie film will take center slope when the Les Arcs European Film Festival kicks off its second edition in French ski resort town Bourg St Maurice/ Les Arcs on Dec. 11.

The festival, making a bid to become the "European Sundance," will feature 12 films in official competition, a panorama of films yet to premiere in France plus premieres of gala titles including Thierry Jousse's No Man's Land and Bansky's Exit Through the Gift Shop.

The fest will open on Dec. 11 with the premiere of Iciar Bollain's Even the Rain starring Gael Garcia Bernal and Luis Tosar.

The public and professional event will feature Q&As with directors and talent plus concerts from Zombie Zombie and soirees featuring celebrity DJs like Ariel Wizman and Gregory Boost.

From Dec. 11– 14, the Arc 1950 Coproduction village will feature 20 European coproduction projects.

Producers, distributors, sales agents and regional funds can meet and mingle and attend conferences during the four-day event.

This year's fest will focus on Denmark as 12 titles from that territory are screened for the public. Danish director Thomas Vinterberg will preside over a jury alongside fellow Dane, actress Connie Nielsen, French actor Jonathan Zaccai and actress Deborah Francois, Polish composer Zbignew Preisner and popular French author Philippe Djian. On Dec. 16, director Nicolas Cuche will premiere his film La Chance de ma Vie alongside the film's stars Elie Semoun and Virginie Efira and the fest will close on Dec. 17 with an awards ceremony, premiere of Anne Giafferi's Qui a Envie d'etre Aime and a gala dinner in a chalet.

While cinema will be the fest's focus, like Sundance, fest guests won't be able to stay away from the snowy surroundings, especially on Dec. 13 for the European Cinema Ski Cup, a ski competition for film professionals including actors, directors, distributors and producers on a giant slalom slope.

The Les Arcs European Film Festival runs Dec. 11t– 18.