Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Ten Years of TIFF

It has been announced today by the Toronto International Film Festival, the first batch of films that will be screening at the 38th annual festival, Sept 5-15th. This particular festival is special for me because this is my 10th year in a row - my first festival was in 2004 and I remember it like it was yesterday. I drove there and saw just two films, but it was a new excuse to visit Toronto. This year, one film in particular has been on my radar long before it finished filming. Steve McQueen's '12 Years a Slave' will not only be screened at TIFF, but it will have its World Premiere at the festival.

The movie was not ready in time for Cannes, and it will not be viewed at the Venice film festival, which occurs a week prior to TIFF. Along with the movie being pushed up two months from Dec 27th to October 18th, the studio for TYAS, FoxSearchlight, apparently wants to handle this film in a more Go for the Glory Gold (aka Oscar), than it did in the promotion for the NC-17 branded 'Shame' in 2011.

'12 Years a Slave' starring Chiwetel Ejiofor (L) and Michael Fassbender (R).
However, along with '12 Years', there are a few film titles that grabbed my attention:

The Fifth Estate - Bill Condon director, Benedict Cumberbatch - Festival opening film
Devil's Knot - story about West Memphis Five
Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom - Idris Elba
Blue is the Warmest Color - Palme d'Or winner
Gravity - Alfonso Cuaron - Sandra Bullock
Only Lovers Left to Live - Tilda Swinton and Tom Hiddleston - Parts filmed in Detroit

These are just the top few I'm thinking about. I'm anxiously awaiting news from the TIFF accreditation department to see if I can get credentialed this year. Sadly, I'm prepared to be denied, but I have a glimmer of hope... (fingers crossed).

For the entire listing of the announced films, go to Tiff.net and read the synopsis of each film. You can also read a great article on the TIFF announcements at Variety.

Meanwhile over in England....

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