Dubai's DIFF promises 'epic' movie line-up

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Philip Seymour Hoffman in a scene from The Master.

Philip Seymour Hoffman in a scene from The Master.

The Dubai International Film Festival has announced it will show some of the world's most eagerly-awaited movies during its run next month.

Organisers of the 9th DIFF, which runs from December 9-16, said they are pulling out all the stops to bring audiences a "line-up of this year’s most wonderfully epic and breathtaking films".

The latest film announcements include the adaptation of David Mitchell’s Cloud Atlas, Paul Thomas Anderson’s The Master, Bill Murray starring as President Franklin D Roosevelt in Hyde Park on Hudson, Dustin Hoffman’s directorial debut Quartet and Wayne Blair’s musical drama The Sapphires about a group of Australian Aboriginal singers.

Sheila Whitaker, director of the Festival’s International Programme, said: “DIFF’s Cinema of the World programme this year is a fascinating range of remarkable films from some of international cinema’s finest filmmakers and acting talent.”

Paul Thomas Anderson’s follow-up to There Will Be Blood is the highly anticipated The Master, a psychological drama that centres around an aimless WWII veteran who befriends the charismatic founder of a new religion.

This is one of the most talked about films of the year and stars Joaquin Phoenix and Philip Seymour Hoffman.

Acclaimed filmmakers Lana Wachowski, Tom Tykwer, and Andy Wachowski, bring Cloud Atlas to the screen starring Oscar winners Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, Jim Broadbent and Susan Sarandon.

Based on the best-selling novel, the film explores how the actions and consequences of individual lives impact one another throughout the past, the present and the future.

A film that is already generating Oscar Buzz is Hyde Park on Hudson which tells the story of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt and his love affair with his distant cousin, Daisy.

Other highlights include Dustin Hoffman’s directorial foray Quartet, shot in the British countryside which focuses on a trio of retired opera singers living out their sunset years in a care home for aging musicians.

DIFF’s artistic director Masoud Amralla al Ali said: “This year, across all our programmes we are bringing audiences a unique selection of films from both young filmmakers with daring visions and legendry acclaimed masters of world cinema who continue to excite us with bold and exhilarating stories.

"While filmmaking techniques and the technology continue to evolve dramatically, some aspects of good cinema remain the same – a powerful narrative, exemplary performances and the power to touch your heart.”

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