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ÉCU Film Festival to screen 77 of the world's best independent films

ÉCU - The European Independent Film Festival has announced its Official Selection for the eleventh edition of the festival which will take place on the April 8 - 10, 2016 in Paris, France.

ÉCU 2016 will showcase 77 films from 31 countries ranging from features, shorts, documentaries, animation and student films through to experimental works. ÉCU's Official Selection represents the very best independent filmmaking talents from the world and filmmakers will be competing in 14 categories for 25 awards, including the prestigious title of 'Best European Independent Film 2016.' In addition, ÉCU will once again present the award Excellence in Women's Filmmaking.

Some highlights from the ÉCU 2016 Official Selection include:

"The Session" (France) directed by Edouard de La Poëze. A short film portraying Paris in 1899. Starring Fanny Ardant as the sultry Countess of Castiglione who entrusts her last portrait to her favourite photographer. Under the prying eye of the divine aristocrat's servants, the session will prove to be more disturbing than expected.

"We Can't Live Without Cosmos" (Russia) directed by Konstantin Bronzit. Two cosmonauts do their best in their everyday training life to make their common dream a reality. An Oscar nominated animated film.

"Mother's Day" (USA) directed by Jeff Tan. Starring Academy Award Winner Melissa Leo. This short film examines a mother and son that are forced to say goodbye forever.

"Refugees" (Netherlands) directed by Eduardo Hernandez Perez and Hans Jaap Melissen. Scopic shows an important part of the largest forced migration since the Second World War, and places it in a unique perspective. Real life drama is portrayed in revolutionary and astonishing virtual reality images.

"Life On The Border" (Iraq) directed by Basmeh Soleiman, Delovan Kekha, Diar Omar, Hazem Khodeideh, Mahmod Ahmad, Ronahi Ezaddin, Sami Hossein, Zohour Saeid. A documentary made by eight children from within the refugee camps on the border of Syria and Iraq. A unique perspective of their life experiences in the wake of brutal ISIS attacks.

"The Way Of Tea" (France) directed by Marc Fouchard. In a small town in Northern France, Alex - a young skinhead - enters Malik's grocery store. Simmering bias and hatred is softened by the simple act of drinking a cup of tea with the enemy.

"Dennis Rodman's Big Bang In PyongYang" (United Kingdom) directed by Colin Offland. After forging an unlikely friendship with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, Dennis Rodman wants to improve relations between North Korea and the US by staging a historic basketball game between the two countries. But the North Korean team isn't the only opposition he'll face...

"This is the 11th year that we have the honour in presenting a selection of the very best independent films from around the world. These films are a beacon of creative light shining upon what can be considered a rather dark world. ÉCU's 2016 Official Selection will make people think, entertain them, make them flinch, make them question and doubt, make them laugh and make them cry - all the feelings that great story-telling evokes." Says Festival President Scott Hillier. "We stand proud behind this year's Official Selection - possibly the best one ever."

As well as the film screenings, festival attendees will have the opportunity to participate in an array of professional workshops, including scriptwriting, editing and directing, as well as attend 'Meet-the-Directors' discussions. There is also a full program of live music hosted by ÉCU's partner Access Film-Music.

As a result of ÉCU's commitment to the discovery, promotion and projection of independent films, it is often referred to as the European equivalent of the Sundance Film Festival. The 2016 European Independent Film Festival will take place on the April 8 - 10 at the Cinema 7 Parnassiens, 75014 Paris. For more information and a full list of the 2016 Official Selection, visit

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