Wednesday Roundup: SAG's A-list presenters; Chinese films withdraw from PSIFF; Sundance news
Not to be outdone by the star-studded lineup at the Golden Globes, the Screen Actors Guild Awards have landed some formidable celebs to present at the ceremony on Jan. 23. George Clooney, Meryl Streep and Alec Baldwin have each been added to the list of presenters; all three are also SAG nominees for "Up in the Air," "Julie & Julia," and "30 Rock," respectively. They join Sandra Bullock -- also a SAG nominee for "The Blind Side" -- who will present the guild's Lifetime Achievement Award to her "Proposal" co-star Betty White as well as Stanley Tucci, Anna Paquin, Chris O'Donnell, Michelle Monaghan and Jane Lynch.
They don't call it the Palm Springs International Film Festival for nothing: Global politics have come to the 21st edition of the desert fest in the form of two films pulled from the lineup by the Chinese government. The pair -- "Quick, Quick Slow" and "City of Life and Death" -- were yanked in response to the inclusion of the documentary "The Sun Behind the Clouds: Tibet's Struggle for Freedom" on the festival docket. The film, about the Dalai Lama's attempts to secure freedom for his country in 2008, is slated for screenings on Jan. 10 and 12; the Jan. 8 and 10 showings of "City of Life and Death" have been replaced by the Austrian/French drama "For a Moment Freedom" and the Canadian/French/Spanish crime comedy "Sticky Fingers," respectively. No replacement has been announced for "Quick, Quick, Slow" as of yet.
And it appears that someone is coming to the Sundance Film Festival with money in hand. CNN reports that Hannover House, the entertainment arm of real estate giant Target Development Group, will be part of an elite group of film buyers at the upcoming edition of the fest. Hannover is looking for up to four titles to acquire for distribution, and they've got the funds to compete with studios for top-shelf projects. Hannover has been in the business since 1993 and is among the leading independent distributors of DVDs and books.
-- Paul Gaita
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