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Berlin gets Hollywood glitz ‘n’ glam

From the Associated Press

Movies from Robert De Niro, Clint Eastwood and Steven Soderbergh will rub shoulders at this year’s Berlin Film Festival with productions from Israel and China, as well as a strong contingent from France, organizers said Tuesday.

The first major European film festival of 2007, its program blends major Hollywood names with productions large and small from around the world. It runs Feb. 8-18.

The 22 movies competing for the top Golden Bear award include De Niro’s “The Good Shepherd,” starring Matt Damon as an agent in the early days of the CIA, and Soderbergh’s “The Good German,” with George Clooney as an American journalist in post-World War II Berlin.

The festival has traditionally struggled to compete with its counterparts in Venice and Cannes in terms of glamour. Festival director Dieter Kosslick said he was confident that “there will be enough star power in town,” with De Niro, Jennifer Lopez, Sharon Stone, Cate Blanchett and Judi Dench among the guests expected.

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