Streamlined Venice fest slated for Aug.


ROME -- A newly streamlined version of the Venice International Film Festival is scheduled take place Aug. 29-Sept. 8, organizers announced Wednesday.

The 64th edition of the event -- which will mark the 75th anniversary of the original festival on Venice's famed Lido -- will include fewer films than the 2006 edition. On tap are 20 in-competition films compared to 22, eight out-of-competition compared to nine, five midnight selections rather than seven, and 18 films in the Horizons documentary sidebar instead of 19.

But the festival has added an additional prize -- the Golden Lion 75 "prize for excellence" -- and will host a special retrospective dedicated to the Spaghetti Western.

"Forty years after the release of Sergio Leone's 'For a Fistful of Dollars,' the fascination for the Spaghetti Western doesn't seem to diminish, when considering the homage diverse directors like Quentin Tarantino, John Woo, Martin Scorsese and Jonnie To have recently made in their films," the festival said in a statement.

The new dates for Venice means there will be an extra week between the festival and the RomaCinemaFest. The Rome festival is scheduled for Oct. 18-26.

The two events clashed this year in part because of the short span between them, but they have taken steps to resolve their differences. Recent talks have sought to assure that Venice, Rome and the Turin Film Festival (held every November) do not overlap or compete.

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