Wednesday, July 25, 2018

I'm Going to TIFF 2018

If you asked me this past Saturday if I was going to the Toronto Int'l Film Festival, I would have said, 'Nope, not this year, maybe in a couple of years'. I've been attending TIFF every year since 2004, up until 2016 when a month later, I moved to California. So last year was the first year I missed TIFF, and I really missed it, but, needed a break from it due to all the craziness related to the expense of attending the festival. But on Monday, once I learned that Timothée Chalamet's anticipated follow-up role post-Call Me By Your Name, Beautiful Boy, is going to have its World Premiere at Toronto, I started to think... hmmm, is it possible for me to fly in and out of Toronto and not miss work? And the answer is: Hell Yes!

Instead of relying on a train or just a tank of gas, I now have to fly to Toronto, and I'm flying from Los Angeles. Once I made the decision to go, I determined that I could only fly out on the Friday redeye so that I could arrive bright and early Saturday, check into hotel, and be ready for a day of watching films. I would then leave 6pm on Sunday and arrive back in LA around 8:30 pm. I would be home by 11, just in time to go to bed and wake up fresh for work the next morning. Easy peasy! So it is done. Hotel booked, flight booked!

Timothée Chalamet and Steve Carell in Beautiful Boy
Although I won't be able to attend the gala for Beautiful Boy, I will try to get tickets to the second screening which is usually scheduled between 11 am and 3 pm on Saturday when the gala is on a Friday night. I'll be in town by then and can see it sometime that day. This year, I purchased the Flex 6 pack which will allow me to pick six films. I don't know if I'll be able to see six films that weekend as I'll want to hang back and enjoy my beloved Toronto and meet some new Club Chalamet friends, but I will see at least 3-4 films. I'm also a member of TIFF, so this will permit me the opportunity to secure tickets a little earlier before the general public.

I've definitely come a lonnnnnng way with TIFF. My first few years were a struggle to get tickets to screenings I wanted to see; affording accommodations (one year had to stay in a hostel); then about 5 years under the generosity of a host who is now a dear friend; to now - affording to attend TIFF under my own terms and financial affordability, and I like this evolution. I've been irritated with TIFF in the past few years of attendance with the long lines, general admission seat wars, not being able to see the red carpet, not a good selection of films, etc. I needed a break from TIFF after 13 straight years of attending. With the new changes at TIFF, I hope I'm able to enjoy it without it being a hassle and being reminded that I'm not a deep pocketed beloved VIP. I'm just a film lover doing what I can to attend a film festival.

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