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There's been a lot of gossip and high hopes among festival types this week about what might be on this year's Cannes lineup. Would Terrence Malick's Tree of Life finally be finished in time to debut there? Would Christopher Nolan show up with Inception? Would Steven Soderbergh have secretly completed yet another movie to show off there?

The answer to all three of those questions, as it turns out, is no, but the just-announced Cannes lineup (via THR) is pretty exciting even for those of us watching the action from these shores. Some of the major competition titles include Mike Leigh's mysterious new film Another Year, the Javier Bardem-starring Biutiful from Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, and Doug Liman's Fair Game, a take on the Valerie Plame case that stars Naomi Watts and Sean Penn.

The United States, as usual, isn't all that represented, with Fair Game the only American competition title, and only Derek Cianfrance's Blue Valentine-- which debuted at Sundance this year-- waving the stars and stripes in Un Certain Regard. Of course, that's fine-- Cannes is a deliberately international festival and shows off some of the excellent foreign films that get roundly ignored over here. But when American auteurs are on top of their game they often show up at Cannes, and it's disappointing to see so few of them on board here.

Cannes artistic director Thierry Fremaux said they're still holding out hope that Malick's film will be finished in time to bow there after all, and there are six or seven more titles still to be added-- which means Inception may make it after all. But otherwise the lineup is here. Head to THR for the full list, and if you're lucky enough to be headed to France to see all these, do us a favor and keep it to yourself.

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