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Tribeca Film Festival unveils its 2021 lineup

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The return of the Tribeca Film Festival will be worth the wait.

As the cinema celebration returns this year after last year’s COVID-19 cancellation, it will pack a host of heavy hitters.

Last week, Lin-Manuel Miranda’s “In the Heights” was announced as the opener at this year’s film feast, and on Tuesday, organizers released the names of more movies that will premiere at the event.

Leading the charge is “False Positive” a John Lee film that follows the story of an expectant mother who rejoices when she finds a reproductive specialist, but then turns suspicious of the situation and loses sight of reality. It stars Ilana Glazer, Justin Theroux and Pierce Brosnan.

Another highlight from the festival — which will now take place from June 9-20 as opposed to its usual springtime date — is “How It Ends,” a comedy featuring Zoe Lister-Jones, Olivia Wilde, Fred Armisen and Nick Kroll. This film was shot during the course of the quarantine period last spring and tells the story of a post-apocalyptic world from a comedic perspective.

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A total of 66 films from 81 filmmakers from across 23 different countries will be premiering this year.

Organizers of the festival also shared that this year’s festivities, which will be held across New York City instead of in just one location, will continue to champion “the discovery of emerging voices and celebrating new work from established talent, the 20th edition of the Festival features comedic, music-centered, political and socially-conscious films from diverse storytellers who use art to inspire positive change and community restoration.”

The Tribeca Film Festival was initially launched in 2002 in an effort to bring business back to lower Manhattan following the Sept. 11 terror attacks on the World Trade Center. The festival was co-founded by Robert De Niro.

Other highlights from this year include world premiere of the documentary “Roadrunner: A Film about Anthony Bourdain” which explores the life of the late chef; the New York premier of “12 Mighty Orphans” starring Luke Wilson, Martin Sheen and Wayne Night and based on a true story about a football team from the Fort Worth orphanage that ended up playing in the Texas state championship game.