The sixth annual Houston Cinema Arts Festival is ready to roll, with an eclectic array of programming that includes live performances, a street photography exhibition, and the Houston premieres of at least two major Academy Award contenders.

And while the star power this year may not be quite as incandescent as it was during the five previous fests, when luminaries such as Robert Redford, Ethan Hawke, and Shirley MacLaine were on the guest lists, HCAF 2014 can boast appearances by the likes of Julie Taymor, who will introduce her new film A Midsummer Night’s Dream on the festival’s opening night; Oscar-nominated director James Ivory, who’ll be honored with the festival’s Levantine Cinema Arts Award and a mini-retrospective of his films; experimental filmmaker Ken Jacobs, who will present a “film performance” titled Time Squared on Friday at the Aurora Picture Show; and Brazilian writer-director Marcelo Gomes, who will present regional premieres of his two most recent films – Once Upon a Time Was I, Verônica (2012) and The Man of the Crowd (2013). You can find the complete schedule at the HCAF website.

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