Spanish actress Penelope Cruz said at the opening of the Los Angeles Film Festival that the screenplay for director Pedro Almodovar's next film, "Los Amantes Pasajeros" (The Brief Lovers) is one of the best of her countryman's career.

Cruz, 38, went to L.A. to attend the North American pre-premiere of "To Rome with Love," a Woody Allen film that was chosen to inaugurate the Angeleno festival, which kicked off the same week it was known that the Madrid actress would be collaborating for a fifth time with her favorite director, Almodovar.

Cruz said that production of "Los Amantes Pasajeros," a film that begins with two scenes she shares with Antonio Banderas, is not yet underway - "they're rehearsing."

She noted that "at last" she and Banderas are working together as they've always wanted to do, and was particularly glad that it would be with "Pedro." Her comments have raised expectations about the upcoming film considerably.

"It's great and the screenplay is wonderful, I laughed so much with this script...I think it's one of Pedro's best screenplays and it makes me happy that he's coming back with such a wild, funny comedy," Cruz told Efe.

The Spaniard repeated her wish to work again some day with Allen, the filmmaker with whom she won her Oscar for "Vicky Cristina Barcelona" and who tabbed her a second time for "To Rome with Love."

"He's going to work in New York again and of course I'd love to do a third film with him and do it in his own city because what could be more fantastic than filming with Woody Allen in New York!" Cruz said.

Allen himself, never very fond of being seen at Hollywood events, decided to show up at the festival's inauguration with his wife Soon-Yi.

The Spanish actress and the New York filmmaker were the stars that glittered most on the red carpet in the absence of the cast's famous American actors - Alec Baldwin, Ellen Page and Jesse Eisenberg. EFE