The Toronto International Film Festival has unveiled the first part of its September line-up and to no one's surprise there are some strong offerings and Oscar hopefuls.
14 Galas and 33 Special Presentations have been announced which includes 25 World Premieres, eight International Premieres, six North American Premieres, and eight Canadian Premieres, including works from Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Spain, Ireland, Luxembourg, Belgium, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, India, Egypt, and Cambodia.
This year, TIFF offers a more tightly curated Festival, with a renewed commitment to bold, director-driven programming, continued support of female filmmakers, and plenty of star power.
Some of the highlighted films that I am excited about are, Battle of the Sexes, starring Steve Carell as Bobby Riggs Emma Stone as Billie Jean King ; Margot Robbie chases Olympic gold in I, Tonya; Paul Rudd goes from MLB to OSS in The Catcher was a Spy; and we will see Festival favourite Jake Gyllenhaal and Tatiana Maslany navigate the aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombing in David Gordon Green’s Stronger.
Other strong contenders and festival favourite directors are Darren Aronofsky’s mother!; Alexander Payne’s Downsizing; Greta Gerwig's Lady Bird; Mahamat Saleh-Haroun's A Season in France; George Clooney’s Surburbicon; Angelina Jolie’s First They Killed My Father; Anurag Kashyap's The Brawler; Andy Serkis’ Breathe; Joe Wright’s Darkest Hour; Martin McDonagh’s Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri; Wim Wenders’ Submergence; and Guillermo del Toro’s The Shape of Water. Also among the galas is this year’s Palme d’Or winning film, The Square, an art-world satire from Swedish filmmaker Ruben Östlund
Many female director's were highlighted showcasing films that include Kings by Deniz Gamze Ergüven, whose 2015 Festival feature Mustangearned an Oscar nod for Best Foreign Film; Mary Shelley by Haifaa Al Mansour, the first female Saudi director; Dee Rees’ Mudbound, an adaptation of Hillary Jordan’s novel about racial tensions in the Jim Crow South; Susanna White’s Woman Walks Ahead, starring forever-favourite Jessica Chastain; and a big must-watch for every Canadian: Long Time Running, Jennifer Baichwal and Nicholas de Pencier’s documentary on The Tragically Hip’s emotional and powerful 2016 final tour.
TIFF’s CEO and director Piers Handling and Festival Artistic Director Cameron Bailey have only announced about one-quarter of the Toronto festival slate. Look forward to many more titles to be revealed in the weeks to come.
The 42nd Toronto International Film Festival runs from September 7 to 17, 2017.
Festival ticket packages are on sale now, and can be purchased online, by phone (416.599.TIFF or 1.888.599.8433), or in person at TIFF Bell Lightbox.