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Through Nov. 18: Film festival in Mannheim-Heidelberg

No need to be on the A-list to attend the International Film Festival Mannheim-Heidelberg. Opening Thursday and running through Nov. 18, the 60-year-old festival serves as a showcase for filmmakers once unknown in the international arena.

From more than 1,000 submissions, judges pick 40 to 50 of the most extraordinary films to present to the public and industry professionals. Films on the program hail from Argentina, Australia, China, Estonia, Iran, Morocco, Poland, Sweden, Taiwan and other countries. All are shown with English subtitles.

Venues in downtown Mannheim include Kino im Stadthaus I and II at the Paradeplatz and Kino Atlantis. In Heidelberg, screenings are held at Kino im Schlossgarten I, II and III in the park surrounding the city’s castle.

Tickets cost 8.50 euros when bought individually; or save by buying blocks of five or 10 for 37 and 65 euros, respectively. A Cinéaste Card for entry to all screenings is 60 euros — bring a photo if you plan to buy one. The photo will be used to make a festival pass so it can’t be shared. Free showings of short films take place at about midnight each night of the festival.

The gala opening Thursday at 8 p.m. at the Kino im Sclossgarten I in Heidelberg includes a party with special guests. The gala closing and award ceremony is scheduled for Nov. 18 at 6:30 p.m. at the Kino im Stadthaus I in Mannheim. Entry to each event costs 8.50 euros. Learn more by dropping by the information points at Paradeplatz in Mannheim or Hauptstrasse/Universitätsplatz in Heidelberg or visit www.iffmh.de/en.

See TOP TRAVEL PICKS ON PAGE 16

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