San Francisco Film Festival to honor Judy Davis

The 55th San Francisco International Film Festival, April 19-May 3, America's longest-running film fest, announced it will pay tribute to actress Judy Davis, who next appears in Woody Allen's To Rome With Love, as part of the Film Society Awards Night.

The award presentation will include clips of her films with David Cronenberg, the Coen brothers, Clint Eastwood, plus Gillian Armstrong's My Brilliant Career and her Oscar-nominated A Passage to India, as well as an onstage interview.

SFIFF 2012 will open with Farewell My Queen, directed by Benoit Jacquot and starring Diane Kruger and Lea Seydoux. The film about Marie Antoinette's final days also opened the Berlinale in February.

Closing the festival is Ramona Diaz's documentary Don't Stop Believin': Everyman's Journey, which looks at the band Journey and its lead singer.

Other film highlights include Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry, about the Chinese artist, and Gimme the Loot, which won the SXSW Audience award.

The fest will screen 174 films including narrative features, documentaries and shorts from 45 countries, featuring four world premieres. More than 100 filmmakers participate in live events, concerts and workshops with close to 80,000 in the audience of the festival.

The Film Society organizers also present several awards including the Persistence of Vision and Golden Gate award to renowned filmmakers.

SFIFF's Kandar Award for screenwriting will go to David Webb Peoples, who penned classics such as Blade Runner starring Harrison Ford, Unforgiven starring Clint Forbes and Twelve Monkeys with Bruce Willis.

Tribute screenings this year feature Clint Eastwood's Unforgiven, Fritz Lang's House by the River and Carol Reed's The Third Man starring Orson Welles.

The Live & Onstage event will feature the world premiere of documentarian Sam Green's The Love Song of R. Buckminster Fuller, with live narration by the director and a live score performed by Yo La Tengo.

Author Jonathan Lethem (Fortress of Solitude) will give the "State of Cinema Address" about how cultural movements and new media revolutions like YouTube and micro-budgeted mumblecore films are transforming cinema, culture and our lives. Past speakers include actress Tilda Swinton and editor of French film magazine Positif Michel Ciment.


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