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Toronto International Film Festival

TIFF Talent Lab Offers Filmmaking Intensive

   Thursday, September 4------ The TIFF Talent Lab is a three day intensive workshop for 24 young Canadian filmmakers who are all charged with making a film using their cellphones. It's not a coincidence that the entire program is sponsored by Motorola, which yesterday unveiled its fall lineup of cellphones and some of the films already produced under the initiative.At the press conference held yesterday, the cellphone manufacturer premiered A Short History of Filmmaking, a commercial...

The Venice/Toronto Connection

 Wednesday, September 3--------What is it like when two of the major film festivals on the international circuit actually overlap? A mix of competition and cooperation it seems. As the Toronto event takes a deep breath in anticipation of its big opening tomorrow and the Venice Film Festival exhales after nearly 10 days of movie madness, the next few days sees a rare overlapping of two major film showcases, 5000 miles apart.The accent of both events are in apparent transition. Venice is  makin...

Music Documentaries Take Center Stage In Toronto

 Wednesday, September 3--------Music documentaries and special music events are taking center stage at the Toronto International Film Festival, which opens tomorrow evening with the world premiere of the Canadian epic Passchendaele. Following last year's docs on the Rolling Stones and U2, this year's crop looks at the worlds of rock music, international rhythms and Broadway showtunes.One of the hottest tickets in town is for the film It Might Get Loud, which features the likes of Jimmy Page (L...

European Film Promotion At Toronto FF

Tuesday, September 2-------European film will again have a high profile at the Toronto International Film Festival, which opens on Thursday. European Film Promotion (EFP) the trans-European organization representing Europe's national film boards, will be in Toronto again, as it has for the past 12 years. Toronto is one of the major industry venues EFP’s sales support initiative, Film Sales Support (FSS). Now in its fourth year of supporting European sales agents and production companies, Film ...

Toronto FF Embraces The Difficult

Tuesday, September 2------While the Toronto International Film Festival, which starts this Thursday, does embrace its valuted position as a a prime launching pad for films with "awards season" ambitions, this year's program contains a number of high profile films that can only be classified as "difficult". Perhaps the Festival alchemy can transform these audience-challenging films into something that has "must see" buzz, but the Festival is to commended for attempti...

Expanded Sales And Industry Office At Toronto FF

 Monday, September 1--------Although Toronto has no official market the likes of Cannes, Berlin or American Film Market, this is still very much an industry-rich event. Film sellers, buyers and programmers are expected here in the thousands to sample new films, sell old ones and do the necessary networking. While it has resisted the creation of a formal Film Market (although this may change with the opening in the next few years of a new Festival hq, the Bell Lightbox), the Festival does mainta...

Famous Faces On Screen At Toronto Film Festival

Friday, August 30-------Some of world cinema's most famous faces are on tap for this year's Toronto International Film Festival, which kicks off the North American film season next week. Celebrities on the screen and on the red carpet include such popular stars as Keira Knightley, Dakota Fanning, Queen Latifah, Alicia Keys, Thandie Newton, Ricky Gervais, Greg Kinnear, Bill Maher, Ralph Fiennes, Gerard Butler, Tom Wilkinson and Jeremy Piven. Keira Knightley could be Oscar bound for her role as th...

Special Presentations At Toronto FF

 Thursday, August 28------The Toronto International Film Festival, which starts next week, has a good number of gala presentations on tap, featuring the newest works from such critically acclaimed directors as Kathryn Bigelow, Spike Lee and Paolo Sorrentino and featuring performances by such diverse talents as John Malkovich, Viggo Mortensen, Ralph Fiennes, Guy Pearce, John Leguizamo, Joseph Gordon Levitt and Michael Cera. In Disgrace by Australian director Steve Jacobs, Australia, cult actor...

A Showcase For Canadian Talents In Toronto

 Wednesday, August 27------While the Toronto International Film Festival is nothing if not international in scope, the Festival has also been mindful of its role of introducing Canadian film talents to the larger public and the worldwide industry that attends the annual festival bash. Continuing in its commitment to celebrate Canadian works, the Festival will present nine new films in the Canada First! program section.Focusing on works from first-time Canadian directors as well as those prese...

Spanish Cinema Highlights Toronto Film Festival

Monday, August 25------Although it is not an official sidebar to the Festival, the upcoming Toronto International Film Festival is highlighting a dozen new films from Spain. In fact, Spain is the European country most represented at the Festival which opens in two weeks. With a mix of straight-out Spanish productions and a host of co-productions with Latin American partners, the accent is on the continued vitality and strong international impression of contemporary Spanish cinema."This is a...

Toronto Talent Lab Returns To The Festival

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by Sandy Mandelberger, Toronto Online Dailies EditorFriday, August 22-------The 33rd Toronto International Film Festival announced today a lineup of esteemed governors and 22 filmmaker participants who will be taking part in this year's Talent Lab. Now in its fifth year, Canadian Initiatives' Talent Lab offers invaluable artistic development opportunities to emerging filmmakers in a four-day intensive programme. This year's governors include celebrated French director Olivier Assayas (Chacun Son...

Strong European Presence At Toronto FF

 by Sandy Mandelberger, Toronto FF Dailies Editor Wednesday, April 20-----With little more than two weeks to go before the opening of the Toronto Film Festival, it is appearing that the Festival will again be a prime showcase of European cinema. While films are still being announced, nearly 30% of the films presented will be of European origin. They will include heavy contributions from such stalwarts as Britain, France, Spain and Germany, but will also devote a considerable amount of screen ...

Canadian Epic To Open Toronto Film Festival

 by Sandy Mandelberger, Toronto FF Dailies Editor Monday, August 18-----With summer in its final sizzle, the Fall film festival season is just moments away. The troika of Montreal, Venice and Toronto begins in the Quebec capital later this week. While other industries still relish the slow period known as the "dog days of August", the film industry is already in high gear mode, looking to these Festivals to unveil the films that everyone will be talking about this awards season.Of th...

Toronto Film Festival Winners

 Monday, September 17---------The Toronto International Film Festival marathon (365 films in 10 days.....pant, pant) came to a close on Saturday evening with the announcement of the film awards at the historic Fairmont Royal York Hotel. While the Festival is mainly a non-competitive affair, the Canadian entries are up for a number of awards, which only helps to strengthen their international profile. Toronto International Film Festival Award WinnersAWARD FOR BEST CANADIAN SHORT FILMThe award ...

It's A Wrap: Parting Thoughts

Sunday, September 16----------The Toronto International Film Festival marathon (365 films in 10 days......pant, pant) is over and whichever way the pundits will lean, it is clear that this is an adventurous, rigorous and exciting event for film buffs and film lovers. While the overall analysis was that the sales/acquisition activity was a little underwhelming, the fact is that the story is not completely written on that aspect of the Festival. Perhaps, considering the chances taken by so many of...

Toronto Film Festival Winners

 Sunday, September 16---------The Toronto International Film Festival marathon came to a close last evening with the announcement of the film awards at the historic Fairmont Royal York Hotel. While the Festival is mainly a non-competitive affair, the Canadian entries are up for a number of awards, which only helps to strengthen their international profile. Toronto International Film Festival Award WinnersAWARD FOR BEST CANADIAN SHORT FILMThe award for Best Canadian Short Film goes to Chris Cho...

Toronto Party Central

 Monday, September 10---------Toronto, like any major film festival on the circuit, is as much about the parties as it is the films. Parties are, after all, the place to meet up and schmooze, seen and be seen, and, one might argue, are the perks after a day of slogging between screening rooms. While it is physically impossible to attend every event  (or even get an invitation to them all), I try and do my share.    The US distributors give some of this town's most stellar soirees, with outs...

Venice Film Festival Winners Shine In Toronto

 Sunday, September 9---------If one missed them at the Venice Film Festival, the major winners of that Festival on the Lido (announced last evening) are playing here in Toronto. As part of the roundelay that has become the Fall Festival circuit, buyers, programmers and the press can pick up on films they have missed by simply waiting for another turn of the merry-go-round. If not Venice, then Toronto. If not Toronto, then New York. If not New York, then San Sebastian.. So for those who have st...

The Fog Of The Iraq War

 Friday, September 7--------September is a month of decision for the US policy in Iraq. Next week, General Petraeus, the head army honcho supervising the "surge" of additional troops on the ground in Iraq, will make his long awaited report to the US Congress about the state of the War. As has been noted in newspapers and on television programs both in the US and around the world, the patience of the American people is at its breaking point, and politicians from both the opposition and...

Toronto FF Opens Tonight With Local Talent

 Thursday, September 6-----------The build up is finally over.....the 31st edition of the Toronto International Film Festival officially opens this evening, with the world premiere screening of FUGITIVE PIECES, the latest film from local boy Jeremy Podeswa. Based on the international best-seller by Canadian author Anne Michaels, the film will make its bow at the beautifully restored historic  Elgin Theater in downtown Toronto's theater district. Expect the cultural, political and business mukk...

Chaz Thorne Is Having His Toronto Moment

 Thursday, September 6--------From a cursory look at the films to be shown at the Toronto International Film Festival, which opens this evening, it can seem as if Hollywood is dominating the program schedule. This is far from the truth. The Festival is very international in its scope, with a high percentage of film auteurs and fledgling directors from Europe, Asia and Latin America. It is also a terrific place to check the pulse of the Canadian film scene and discover local talent.One talented ...

Romanian Film Cited As Year's Best

 Wednesday, September 5----------4 MONTHS, 3 WEEKS AND 2 DAYS, the searing drama by Romanian filmmaker Cristian Mungiu which won the Palme D'Or at the Cannes Film Festival this year, has added to that triumph by being named as the Film of the Year by the International Federation of Film Critics (FIPRESCI). The film, which also won the FIPRESCI Prize in Cannes, is making its Canadian Premiere next week at the Toronto International Film Festival.  The film, the latest in a recent renaissance of...

The Toronto Torrent

 Tuesday, September 4---------The Toronto International Film Festival doesn't officially open for another 48 hours, but already a hurricane of film talents, industryites, press and film buffs are descending onto the Ontario metropolis with a torrent that is almost audible. Coming in from Los Angeles, New York and the four corners of the globe, including the just concluded Montreal World Film Festival, and the still continuing Venice Film Festival......all eyes are on "the gateway to North...

EFP Supports European Film In Toronto

 Monday, September 3----------European Film Promotion (EFP), the pan-European agency of the continent's film promotion boards, again returns to the Toronto International Film Festival with a program of support for European filmmakers and sales agents. For this year's edition, 39 European films will benefit from the Film Sales Support (FSS) initiative sponsored by EFP. 26 different European sales agents and production companies are receiving support for the promotion of 39 European films in ...

Log On To Montreal and Toronto Film Festival Dailies Sites

For the two weeks, editorial focus will be on the Montreal World Film Festival and the Toronto International Film Festival. Check out all the excitement via the Online Dailies Sites.  Montreal World Film Festival Dailies: www.fest21.com/blog/montreal_world_film_festival    Toronto International Film Festival Dailies: www.fest21.com/blog/toronto_film_festival   Come back for more Awards coverage in 2 weeks.............Sandy Mandelberger, Awards Watch Edit...

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