The Toronto International Film Festival® announced today its Discovery programme showcasing 30 outstanding and absorbing feature films, including 16 World Premieres, by first and second time directors from Canada and across the globe.
“Discovery is the place where Festival audiences will find the future of filmmaking,” said Cameron Bailey, Artistic Director of the Toronto International Film Festival. “You can expect to uncover thrilling new voices, inspiring storytellers and hidden gems among this fantastic showcase of work from some of the most exciting new directors from around the world.”
The diverse Discovery lineup includes Desde Allá, an intense social drama from Venezuelan newcomer Lorenzo Vigas; Tom and Sam McKeith’s Manila-set thriller Beast; German filmmaker Sebastian Ko’s riveting suspense We Monsters; Michael Lennox’s A Patch of Fog which chronicles a British anti-bromance; Very Big Shot, the debut from Mir-Jean Bou Chaaya, delving into a darkly comedic world of coke smuggling in Lebanon; Maris Curran’s intimate drama Five Nights in Maine; Irish director Simon Fitzmaurice’s feature debut, the coming-of-age story My Name is Emily; and Mexico’s Alejandra Márquez Abellas’ debut, the poignant drama Semana Santa.
The Toronto International Film Festival is also delighted to announce an additional title has been added to the Cinematheque Programme — a special 20th anniversary screening of Michael Mann’s magnum-opus Heat, followed by a Q&A with the acclaimed writer/director; and in the Vanguard Programme, the Festival announces the world premiere of Pedro Morelli’s Zoom.
A Patch of Fog Michael Lennox, United Kingdom World Premiere
A celebrated novelist and TV personality finds his reputation on the line when he is caught shoplifting by a lonely security guard, intent on becoming his friend for life. Stephen Graham (Pirates of the Caribbean, Boardwalk Empire) stars alongside Conleth Hill (Game of Thrones), Lara Pulver (Sherlock), Arsher Ali (Four Lions) and Ian McElhinney (Game of Thrones).
The Ardennes Robin Pront, Belgium World Premiere
Two bandit brothers, one fresh from prison, the other eager to escape their criminal past, form a potentially explosive love triangle with the ex-con’s ex-girlfriend, in Robin Pront’s Cain vs. Abel update.
Beast Tom McKeith, Sam McKeith, Australia/Philippines World Premiere
Deep in the slums of Manila, a young boxer's life is changed forever when his father pressures him to cheat in a fight.
Black Adil El Arbi, Bilall Fallah, Belgium World Premiere
Fifteen-year-old Mavela is a member of the notorious Black Bronx gang. She falls head over heels in love with the charismatic Marwan, a boy from the rival gang 1080ers. The two young people are brutally forced to choose between loyalty to their gang and their love for each other. An impossible choice ... or not?
Born to Dance Tammy Davis, New Zealand World Premiere
A Maori teen faces parental and social pressure while leading his competitive hip-hop dance crew toward the regional championships, in this exhilarating feature directorial debut from New Zealand actor Tammy Davis.
Dégradé Arab Nasser, Tarzan Nasser, Palestine/France/Qatar North American Premiere
Gaza Strip, present day. Christine’s beauty salon is heaving with female clients: a bitter divorcée, a stern religious woman, a disenchanted housewife addicted to prescription drugs, and a young bride-to-be, among others. But their day of leisure is disrupted when gunfire breaks out across the street. A gangland family has stolen the lion from Gaza’s zoo, and the police have decided it’s time to wrestle control. Stuck in the salon, the women start to unravel...
Desde Allá Lorenzo Vigas, Venezuela North American Premiere
Fifty-year-old Armando picks up young boys in the streets of Caracas and pays them to come home with him. He also regularly spies on an older man with whom he seems bound by something in the past. One day he meets 17-year-old Elder, the leader of a small gang. Violent at first, their relationship morphs into something beautiful ... until the inevitable happens.
Downriver Grant Scicluna, Australia International Premiere
James has served time for drowning a little boy when he himself was just a child, although the body was never found. Upon his parole, a visit from his victim's mother sends him on a quest to find the truth. With little time and danger at every turn, James risks his freedom and his life to uncover the trail of sins that might give closure to a grieving mother.
Eva Nová Marko Škop, Slovakia World Premiere
Eva would do anything to regain the love of the one she hurt the most — her son. She is a recovered alcoholic, but decades ago she was a famous actress.
Five Nights in Maine Maris Curran, USA World Premiere
Reeling from the tragic, sudden death of his wife, a man travels to rural Maine to seek answers from his estranged mother-in-law, who is herself confronting guilt and grief over her daughter's death. Starring David Oyelowo (Selma), Dianne Wiest and Rosie Perez.
The Here After (Efterskalv) Magnus von Horn, Poland/Sweden/France North American Premiere
When John returns home to his father after serving time in prison, he is looking forward to starting his life afresh. However in the local community, his crime is neither forgotten nor forgiven. John’s presence brings out the worst in everyone around him and a lynch-mob atmosphere slowly takes shape. Feeling abandoned by his former friends and the people he loves, John loses hope and the same aggressions that previously sent him to prison start building up again. Unable to leave the past behind, he decides to confront it.
Ixcanul Jayro Bustamante, Guatemala/France Canadian Premiere
María, a young 17-year-old Mayan girl, lives and works with her parents on a coffee plantation in the foothills of an active volcano in Guatemala. An arranged marriage awaits her. Although María dreams of going to the “big city,” her status as an indigenous woman does not permit her to change her destiny. A snake bite forces her to go out into the modern world where her life is saved, but at what price?
James White Josh Mond, USA Canadian Premiere
James White (Christopher Abbott) is a troubled twenty-something trying to stay afloat in a frenzied New York City. He retreats further into a self-destructive, hedonistic lifestyle, but as his mother (Cynthia Nixon) battles a serious illness James is forced to take control of his life. The directorial debut of Martha Marcy May Marlene producer Josh Mond, James White, which had its world premiere at Sundance Film Festival 2014 where it was the winner of the Audience Award: NEXT, is a confident and closely observed debut that explores loss and the deep relationship between a mother and son.
Keeper Guillaume Senez, Belgium/Switzerland/France North American Premiere
Maxime and Mélanie are in love. Together, they clumsily explore their sexuality with fiery curiosity until the day Mélanie realizes she’s pregnant. At first Maxime takes the news badly, but then he gets used to the idea of becoming a father. He convinces Melanie to keep the baby. So it’s been decided – Maxime and Mélanie, all of fifteen years old, will become parents.
Les Cowboys Thomas Bidegain, France/Belgium North American Premiere
A vast prairie, a country and western gathering somewhere in the east of France. Alain is a central figure in this community. He’s dancing with his daughter, 16-year-old Kelly, as his wife and their young son Kid watch from the sidelines. But on this day, Kelly disappears, and the family falls apart. Alain embarks on a relentless search for his daughter, even though it costs him everything and takes him to dark, unsettling places, where his sole support is Kid, who sacrifices his youth to accompany his father on this seemingly endless quest.
Meghmallar Zahidur Rahim Anjan, Bangladesh World Premiere
A case of mistaken identity throws an apolitical chemistry teacher into the maelstrom of the 1971 Bangladesh Liberation War, in the striking debut feature from director Zahidur Rahim Anjan.
Mountain Yaelle Kayam, Israel/Denmark North American Premiere
An Orthodox Jewish woman, living at the edge of the cemetery on Jerusalem's Mount of Olives, becomes fascinated by a nocturnal community of prostitutes and drug dealers congregating amongst the tombstones. Mountain is a haunting and dramatic exploration of a women's search for identity.
My Name is Emily Simon Fitzmaurice, Ireland North American Premiere
Packed off to a foster home after her father is institutionalized, a rebellious young Irish girl resolves to bust her dad out of the hospital where he's been confined, in this spirited coming-of-age tale from celebrated memoirist and first-time feature director Simon Fitzmaurice.
The Paradise Suite Joost van Ginkel, Netherlands/Sweden/Bulgaria World Premiere
This dexterous tale of survival from director Joost van Ginkel traces the intersecting stories of six immigrants from very different backgrounds in Amsterdam who learn that they can irreversibly influence each other's lives, sometimes with just one glance.
Semana Santa Alejandra Márquez Abella, Mexico World Premiere
Dali and her eight-year-old son Pepe take a vacation to Acapulco with Dali’s boyfriend, Chavez. Instead of bringing them closer, their beach holiday brings out things in each of them that threaten to pull this emerging family apart.
Spear Stephen Page, Australia World Premiere
Djali, a young Aboriginal man, sets off on a journey of initiation to understand what it means to be a man in a modern day world. He sees the problems being faced by Aboriginal men in remote and urban communities. As he struggles to find his place, he becomes awakened to a spiritual force within, guiding him on his journey into manhood.
Very Big Shot (Film Kteer Kbeer) Mir-Jean Bou Chaaya, Lebanon/Qatar World Premiere
Intending to smuggle the amphetamine Captagon to Iraqi Kurdistan, a small-time Lebanese drug dealer discovers that a way to foil customs, with the help of a talentless filmmaker. Posing as a film producer, he has no qualms manipulating public opinion to his advantage.
The Wait (L’attesa) Piero Messina, Italy North American Premiere
Waiting for someone is an act of faith. Anna and Jeanne, isolated in a Sicilian country house in Caltagirone, are waiting for Giuseppe’s arrival. He is the former’s son, the latter’s boyfriend. Their wait turns into a mysterious act of love and will, while in the streets people are celebrating Easter.
We Monsters (Wir Monster) Sebastian Ko, Germany North American Premiere
Paul and Christine know their teenage daughter Sarah has been thrown off track by their separation — but is she capable of committing a horrible crime? Wanting to protect her, they decide attempt to hide her wrongdoing, but their joint guilt forces the family back together under a web of lies. The directorial debut from German actor Sebastian Ko, We Monsters is a gripping psychological thriller.
Wedding Doll (Chatona Meniyar) Nitzan Gilady, Israel International Premiere
Fixated on romantic fantasies, a kindly and strong-willed young woman with a mild mental disability embarks on a relationship — much to the concern of her protective mother — in this assured first feature from director Nitzan Gilady.
Previously announced Canadian titles in the Discovery Programme include Stephen Dunn’s Closet Monster, Adam Garnet Jones’ Fire Song, Jamie M. Dagg’s River, Kire Paputts’ The Rainbow Kid, and Andrew Cividino’s Sleeping Giant.
Heat Michael Mann, USA
Hard-boiled ex-con Neil McCauley is the leader of a crew of seasoned thieves who operate with grim determination and military discipline. But when a last-minute replacement on his team leads to a bloody triple murder during an armoured truck robbery, McCauley is targeted by veteran detective Vincent Hanna, whose obsessive dedication both mirrors and contrasts with McCauley's ruthless professionalism. Starring Al Pacino and Robert DeNiro with Jon Voight, Val Kilmer, Ashley Judd, Tom Sizemore and Amy Brenneman.
Zoom, Pedro Morelli, Canada World Premiere
Zoom is a fast-paced, pop-art inspired, multi-plot contemporary comedy. The film consists of three seemingly separate but ultimately interlinked storylines about a comic book artist, a novelist and a film director. Each character lives in a separate world but authors a story about the life of another.
The 40th Toronto International Film Festival runs September 10 to 20, 2015.
TIFF KIDS PROGRAMME SATISFIES EVEN THE SMALLEST CINEPHILES AT THE TORONTO INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
The Toronto International Film Festival® presents an international selection of family-friendly films as part of this year’s TIFF Kids programme. The lineup opens a world of cultural perspectives for young festival-goers, presenting everything from animated adventures to touching coming-of-age stories. The programme boasts the world premiere of the remastered and expanded Brad Bird classic The Iron Giant with performances from Jennifer Aniston and Harry Connick Jr.
"The TIFF Kids programme is all about bringing the best of international children's cinema to the Festival," said Elizabeth Muskala, Director of Youth Learning. "This year we are thrilled to showcase films from Europe and Asia, as well as a classic animated family feature, with The Iron Giant: Signature Edition."
The Boy and the Beast (Bakemono no ko) Mamoru Hosoda, Japan International Premiere
A young boy in modern-day Tokyo stumbles into an alternate dimension and becomes the apprentice to a bearlike warrior, in this stunning animated fantasy from writer-director Mamoru Hosoda. Cast includes Koji Yakusho and Aoi Miyazaki. Recommended for ages 11 and up.
My Skinny Sister (Min lilla syster) Sanna Lenken, Sweden/Germany Canadian Premiere
Just as Stella enters the exciting world of adolescence, she discovers that her big sister and role model Katja is hiding an eating disorder. The disease slowly tears the family apart. A story about jealousy, love and betrayal told with warmth, depth and laughter. Starring Rebecka Josephson, Amy Deasismont and Annika Hallin. Recommended for ages 11 and up.
Phantom Boy Alain Gagnol and Jean-Loup Felicioli, France/Belgium North American Premiere
From the Academy Award-nominated directors of A Cat in Paris comes a thrilling new adventure. An 11-year-old boy named Leo, becomes an unlikely superhero when he discovers that he has the ability to leave his body and fly through walls. When a nefarious gangster takes control of New York’s power supply, only he can save the city. Cast includes Audrey Tautou, Édouard Baer and JeanPierre Marielle. Recommended for ages 10 and up.
The Iron Giant: Signature Edition Brad Bird, USA World Premiere
Remastered and enhanced with two new scenes, the modern animated classic about a young boy befriending a gigantic space robot returns to enchant a new generation of audiences. Cast includes Jennifer Aniston, Harry Connick, Jr., Vin Diesel and Eli Marienthal. Recommended for ages 7 and up.
FESTIVAL’S IN CONVERSATION WITH… PROGRAMME OFFERS INTIMATE DISCUSSIONS WITH CRITICALLY ACCLAIMED TALENT
On-stage appearances by Julianne Moore, Salma Hayek, Sarah Silverman and Matthew Weiner
This September, the Toronto International Film Festival® invites audiences to four unique, intimate sessions with preeminent stars from the film and television worlds. Offering compelling, in-depth exchanges and revealing personal experiences from their latest projects, this year’s esteemed lineup of special guests includes Julianne Moore, Salma Hayek, Sarah Silverman,
and Matthew Weiner.
“Our In Conversation With… events always offer something unexpected. Whether it’s a personal anecdote, a surprising fact, or an industry tidbit, audiences will be enchanted by this year’s lineup of prestigious guests,” said Cameron Bailey, Artistic Director, Toronto International Film Festival. “Festivalgoers will have the exclusive opportunity to hear from the top talent of the film and television industries in a candid and intimate environment.”
In Conversation With... replaces the Festival's former Mavericks programme.
In Conversation With… Julianne Moore
Among her numerous accolades throughout her career in film, television, on stage and as a NY-Times Bestselling author, Academy Award® and Emmy®-winning actress Julianne Moore is the ninth person in Academy history to receive two Oscar nominations in the same year and the only American actress to be awarded top acting prizes at the Cannes, Berlin and Venice film festivals. Having appeared in more than 60 feature films, she will next be seen this October in Freeheld – part of the Festival’s official selection – opposite Ellen Page and Michael Shannon, and in November as President Coin in Francis Lawrence’s upcoming Hunger Games sequel Mockingjay: Part 2. Julianne is an Artist Ambassador for Save the Children U.S. Programs, is on the Advisory Council of The Children’s Health Fund, and is a supporter of Planned Parenthood and the Tuberous Sclerosis Alliance. Moore will hit the stage for a special conversation on the occasion of the premiere of her highly anticipated new film.
In Conversation With… Salma Hayek
Academy Award-nominee and Emmy winner Salma Hayek has proven herself as a prolific actress, producer and director in both film and television. Hayek has several films set for release this year and next, including the Festival selection Septembers of Shiraz alongside Adrien Brody, Tale of Tales by acclaimed Italian director Matteo Garrone, and as the voice “Teresa Taco” in Seth Rogen’s upcoming animated feature Sausage Party. She was nominated for an Academy Award, Golden Globe®, Screen Actors Guild and a BAFTA award for her leading role in Julie Taymor’s Frida. Noted for her acting career, Hayek has also dedicated much of her time to social activism, previously serving as spokesperson for the Pampers/UNICEF partnership worldwide and the Avon Foundation's Speak Out Against Domestic Violence program. In November 2005, she served as co-host, alongside Julianne Moore, at the Nobel Peace Prize Concert in Oslo. She was also part of the One campaign that singer and activist Bono created, as well as a member of Global Green, and Youth Aids. Born and raised in Coatzacoalcos, Mexico, Hayek studied International Relations in college in Mexico. Hayek takes the stage to discuss her remarkable career to date.
In Conversation With… Sarah Silverman
Two-time Emmy winner Sarah Silverman is a versatile performer with a repertoire that includes everything from film and television to stand-up comedy and iconic videos. Silverman next stars in the lead role of drama I Smile Back – in the Festival’s official selection – and in Ashby. She recently wrapped production on the ‘Top Secret Untitled Lonely Island Project,’ as well as a comedy pilot for HBO which she executive produced and in which she stars. Last year she was awarded an Emmy for Outstanding Writing for a Variety Special for her comedy special We Are Miracles. Other credits include Wreck-It Ralph, Take This Waltz and her concert film Sarah Silverman: Jesus is Magic. Silverman’s sharp sense of humour is sure to entertain audiences as she discusses her varied career.
In Conversation With… Matthew Weiner
Matthew Weiner serves as creator, Executive Producer, writer and director on the critically acclaimed drama Mad Men. This exclusive on-stage conversation is sure to delight fans and will include a screening of the final episode of Season 1, “The Wheel,” which Weiner wrote and directed, accompanied by his engaging and entertaining live commentary, as well as a discussion about Weiner’s career to date. Mad Men is nominated for 11 Emmy nominations this year including Outstanding Drama Series and two writing nominations for Weiner including the finale of the series which he also directed. Since the series premiere in 2007, Mad Men has become one of television’s most honored shows joining an elite group in 2011 when it became only the fourth drama to be awarded four consecutive Emmy Awards for Outstanding Drama Series. Additional honors for the series include: three Golden Globe Awards for Best Television Drama Series; a Peabody Award; three Producers Guild Awards; four Writers Guild Awards; two BAFTA Awards; five Television Critics Association Awards, including Program of the Year; and being named seven years running to AFI’s Top 10 Outstanding Television Programs. Weiner’s additional credits include serving as an Executive Producer and writer on The Sopranos, and writer on various television comedy series including The Naked Truth, Becker, and Andy Richter Controls the Universe. In addition to his television credits, Weiner wrote and directed the feature film, Are You Here, featuring performances from Owen Wilson, Zack Galifianakis and Amy Poehler. Weiner currently lives in Los Angeles with his wife, architect Linda Brettler, and their four sons.
FESTIVAL STREET: WHERE CINEMA MEETS THE SIDEWALK
Film-Themed Free Programming takes over King Street from Sept. 10-13
The Toronto International Film Festival® invites audiences to step outside the theatre this year with the return of the hugely popular Festival Street initiative. From September 10 to 13, King Street West between Peter and University Streets will be closed to vehicular traffic and transformed into a pedestrian paradise free for all to enjoy.
“We’re thrilled to be bringing back all the free Festival Street fun for another year,” said Cameron Bailey, Artistic Director, Toronto International Film Festival. “TIFF is informally known as the ‘people’s festival’ and Festival Street is one of our most accessible initiatives. Full of film-themed free programming, it’s an opportunity for everyone to have their own special Festival experience.” In celebration of TIFFs 40th anniversary, Festival Street is literally reaching new heights with Questival, a walking interactive quiz designed by Frontier Design & Innovation. A fleet of balloons with emblazoned with artwork, each representing a past Festival film, will float above King Street for four days only. The NewCanadianMusic.ca stage features one-of-a-kind presentations connected to film as well as a line-up of up-and-coming musical talent. New this year, cinema-inspired installations explore everything from experimental film to stop-motion animation, the Slaight Family Zone welcomes even the littlest cinephiles to Festival Street, and Food Truck Village will leave no taste bud unsatisfied.
“This year we wanted to incorporate more cinematic elements into the programming for Festival Street,” said Nobu Adilman, Festival Street Programmer for the Toronto International Film Festival. “From our on-stage presentations and interactive installations to our family zone, visitors can sit back and observe or they can jump in and be active participants." Learn more and see the full schedule by visiting tiff.net/festivalstreet.
In the spirit of the 40th Festival, TIFF challenges audiences to ace the Questival walking quiz. Look up along Festival Street and you will spot a fleet of balloons emblazoned with flashy icons, each one representing a past Festival film. Play the game online at tiff.net/questival to win free film tickets to this year’s Festival – competition ends 10pm Friday at 5pm. Created by Frontier Design & Innovation, a creative exploration company made up of a magazine, design studio and ventures group focused on design-driven ideas and idea-driven design.
Titicut Follies – The Ballet World Premiere
Inspired by filmmaker Frederick Wiseman’s groundbreaking 1967 documentary, Titicut Follies –The Ballet is a cross-genre exploration integrating film, dance and music created by Wiseman, acclaimed choreographer James Sewell, and Saturday Night Live Music Director Lenny Picket. Over the course of an hour, the ballet will be performed three times, with Wiseman, Sewell and Picket in attendance. A newly restored 35mm print of Wiseman’s Titicut Follies screens in the TIFF Cinematheque programme and Wiseman’s latest film In Jackson Heights will screen in the TIFF Docs programme.
Making its world premiere, NARI is the unsung story of the lives of Lakshmi Shankar and her daughter Viji, two extraordinary artists who helped bring Indian music to the West in the 1970s through their close collaborations with Ravi Shankar and George Harrison. This arresting, multi-generational, multimedia mash-up was conceived by Gingger Shankar – singer, composer and the only woman in the world to play the double violin – in collaboration with producer Dave Liang and multidisciplinary artist Sun Yunfan.
Winner of the second season of Arab Idol, Mohammed Assaf makes his Canadian debut on Festival Street. Since winning Arab Idol, Assaf has toured the world, performing in a number of sold-out concerts to audiences in the Middle East, Europe and the Americas. Assaf met with the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Ban Ki-moon, in New York in November 2013 and was named Goodwill Ambassador for Peace by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA). The Idol, a film about Assaf’s journey, makes its world premiere in the Special Presentations programme.
Bruce Peninsula and the Sounds of Sleeping Giant
Bruce Peninsula recreates their booming soundtrack for Sleeping Giant, Andrew Cividino’s debut feature that screens in the Discovery programme, as soaring outtakes from the film transport you to the wilds of Northern Ontario.
Telefilm Canada presents Canada’s Got Game live!
Co-hosted by Ben Mulroney (etalk) and Teddy Wilson (InnerSpace), Telefilm Canada presents the second edition of its Canada’s Got Game live game show in collaboration with the Toronto Star. This year the public will have a chance to be contestants, alongside Canadian actors. Two teams, captained by Vinay Virmani (The Steps) and Michael Seater (Life With Derek), compete in hilarious games to test their knowledge of Canadian cinema. Come cheer on Amanda Brugel (Room), Jack Fulton (Closet Monster), Cara Gee (Empire of Dirt) and Pat Mills (Guidance).
Bookaboo on Festival Street
Rock-’n’-read fun with puppets! Don’t miss a rare opportunity to see Bookaboo, the internationally famous drumming rock puppy, share and read beautiful picture books with a host of celebrities live onstage! Bookaboo is a coproduction between UK's Happy Films and Canada's Sinking Ship Entertainment.
Movie-Themed Uke Jam!
Movie themes get anthemic makeovers by Toronto’s most virtuosic ukulele players! From the Looney Tunes Overture to The Bee Gees’ More Than A Woman (featured in Saturday Night Fever) — and a little Elvis in between — Steve McNie and his band of merrymakers will have the kids up and dancing in seconds!
As River Tiber, 25-year-old Toronto singer/multi-instrumentalist and producer Tommy Paxton-Beesley is unafraid to push his love for R&B and hip hop production into unusual places: pitching his vocals to sound like Mariah Carey, multi-tracking his voice into a dozen ghost choruses, and narrowing the gap in the soul spectrum between Jodeci and Flying Lotus. 2015 has been good to the rising artist, who found his voice notably sampled on Drake’s If You're Reading This It’s Too Late and performed on BADBADNOTGOOD and Ghostface Killah collaborative album, Sour Soul.
The Big Sound Festival Soul Revue
Festival Street goes full-on Motown with The Big Sound, a 25+ super-group of local players from across all musical genres, and featuring hot soul singers Maylee Todd, Gary Beals, Wade O. Brown, Maya Killtron and Tanika Charles. From Aretha to Stevie, classic cuts from the greatest musical era of all time get the full sonic treatment that transformed Detroit into Hitsville, USA.
Formed in Canada, the Ascot Royals are two British-born brothers, Jimmy and Ben Chauveau, the Isreali-born Tal Vaisman, and a rural Ontario boy, Sam Stark. It is this cultural mosaic and shared devotion to music that gives the Ascot Royals their stand-alone sound.
Jillea is the winner of Slaight Music’s 2013 It’s Your Shot song-writing and artist development competition. Known for her urban-tinged pop and emotive voice, Jillea has just completed writing and recording her debut EP with production by Andrew “Marty” Martino (of Down With Webster) and Adam Alexander.
Singer-songwriter Jessica Mitchell is country music’s best kept secret. After signing a publishing deal with Slaight Music Publishing, Mitchell embarked on several writing trips to Nashville where she found herself inspired by the raw honesty and storytelling nature of the country music genre. She has spent the last few years travelling between Toronto and Nashville, collaborating with top-notch songwriters including Stephen Kozmeniuk, Todd Clark and John Goodwin.
Singer, songwriter, trumpet and piano player Theo Tams has just released a new six-song EP, Back Pocket, the follow-up to his 2009 debut album, Give It All Away. Theo is currently signed to Slaight Music/Warner Music Canada and is still fondly remembered for winning the sixth and final season of Canadian Idol.
DJ John Kong
Toronto-based DJ John Kong sets are a genre-bending mix of soul-jazz, funk, disco, boogie, house, and hip-hop where only the groove makes the rules.
DJ Chico was one of the first DJs to bring vintage soul, R&B, and greasy garage punk to the rock ‘n’ roll clubs of Toronto including The El Mocambo, The Horseshoe Tavern, The Silver Dollar, and the near-mythic Lion Club.
Using an eclectic sonic palette, Toronto-based music producer and DJ Sunclef creates an underlying energy and mood that connects people and moments with sounds and rhythms that are, at once, both forward reaching and accessible.
Festival Street Installations
The Situated Cinema Project; in-camera
This portable micro-cinema was commissioned by Toronto-based media-arts exhibition group Pleasure Dome, filmmaker Solomon Nagler, and Canadian architects Thomas Evans and Jonathan Mandeville. Step inside, or watch the film through peep holes on the outside, to catch the world premiere of Pilgrimage, an experimental 16mm film loop by Canadian filmmakers Nagler and Alexandre Larose. Pilgrimage draws on issues of memory, decay, palimpsest and the rubbing together of archive, fiction and situations, constructed from 8mm strips of found footage that the artists gleaned during a residency in Sydney, Australia.
demi monde World Premiere
A major new installation by experimental filmmaker and multimedia artist Richard Kerr, demi monde is a mesmerizing slow dissolve of Hollywood footage, which degrades and replenishes at a near imperceptible pace. Created from a dual projector slideshow of 160 handmade 35mm transparencies culled from an archive of Hollywood movies, which were digitized in a series of long dissolving sequences, demi monde is a painterly display of slow cinema writ large. Ebbing between abstraction and recognizable imagery, demi monde hints at cinema and life’s grander themes as it exhumes immersive, haunting and beautiful apparitions. demi monde will make its premiere on September 10 at the wall on the north-east corner of King and John, and will continue to be projected nightly until the end of the Festival.
Andy Warhol: Stars of the Silver Screen Photo Booth
Calling all Warhol Superstars! This photo booth transforms filmstrips into .GIFs you can share with friends on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter, in anticipation of TIFF’s fall exhibition Andy Warhol: Stars of the Silver Screen, which opens October 30 at TIFF Bell Lightbox.
Food Truck Village
For the first time ever, TIFF launches Food Truck Village at Pearl and John St, a selection of the city's top mobile vendors with delicious offerings that range from tasty vegan and sweet treats to meaty paradise and savoury delights. Trucks include bgood’s hand crafted fast foods, Chimney Stax authentic Hungarian desserts, Heirloom’s local & sustainable snacks, Toronto's first BBQ themed truck – Hogtown Smoke, Koi Gourmet’s Korean fusion cuisine and Localista, the farm-to-street inspired food truck.
Slaight Family Zone
Pop and Lock Dance Machine
Can't dance? Don't sweat it. Through the magic of stop-motion animation, the Pop and Lock Dance Machine gives dancers - of all ages - legit moves and the video evidence to prove it. Created by Catshrine, Toronto-based mixed-media artists Christopher F. and Irene A., who specialize in strange creatures, enviro-sculpture, portraiture, wearable art and animation.
Grab a paintbrush and collaborate with local artist Jeff Blackburn on our epic, street-spanning colouring book, and check back daily to see the panels take shape with every new dab, stroke, and blob.
Hand Drawn Headshots
Got two minutes? Canadian comic artist and illustrator Steve Manale (Superslackers) will blow your mind with his lifelike, hand-drawn headshots that you can (and should) use to book your next audition!
Magic on the big screen is one thing; magic right before your eyes is something else! James Alan has spent the past 10 years creating magic and turning tricks and illusions into astonishing memories.
Sponsor & Partner Activations
Airbnb Festival Insider
Discover Airbnb's best kept secrets for local living in Toronto. Enter to win $1,000 travel credit redeemable in 191 countries!
Line and Cheese Party!
Visit the All You Need Is Cheese booth for Canadian Cheese popcorn and a chance to win great prizes.
Express Pop-Up Shop
Stop by for free giveaways, a chance to win prizes and to see the Express Fall Collection.
Restaurant Row Patio Extensions
All 14 street-level eateries along Restaurant Row extend their patios along King Street, allowing more space for Festival-goers to enjoy all the Entertainment District has to offer — and recharge before their next screening.
City of Toronto INFOTOGO Visitor Information Centre
The City of Toronto's INFOTOGO Visitor Information Centre offers brochures, maps, guide books, and more to help visitors make the most of their time on Festival Street and Toronto.
Other Awesome Activations
TIFF Membership Tent
Stop by for a visit and learn about membership, year round programming and how the power of film comes to life, 365 days a year
Find the perfect gift for the film lover in your life: choose from uniquely designed products, accessories, books, DVDs and great stuff for kids.
Festival Street Piano
Come and release your inner Rachmaninoff on our public piano, imaginatively painted by local artist Jonathan Petersen.
When it’s time to take a break during all the action, make a stop at TIFFs Festival Seating areas. Do some business; catch up with old friends; play a game; listen to a street-side concert; or grab a quick bite before continuing your festivities.
The 2015 Toronto International Film Festival® Official Film Schedule was released today and is available at TIFF Bell Lightbox or by visiting tiff.net/festival. Copies will also be distributed in the Toronto Star and Metro on Thursday, August 27. A section about the Festival will appear in the Toronto Star on Thursday, September 3, and will include the full film schedule.
Purchase Festival ticket packages online 24 hours a day at tiff.net/festival, by phone from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. ET daily at 416.599.TIFF or 1.888.599.8433, or visit the Gupta Box Office at TIFF Bell Lightbox in person from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. ET daily at TIFF Bell Lightbox, Reitman Square, 350 King Street West, until August 26 while quantities last.
TIFF prefers Visa.
TIFF is a charitable cultural organization whose mission is to transform the way people see the world, through film. An international leader in film culture, TIFF projects include the annual Toronto International Film Festival in September; TIFF Bell Lightbox, which features five cinemas, major exhibitions, and learning and entertainment facilities; and innovative national distribution program Film Circuit. The organization generates an annual economic impact of $189 million CAD. TIFF Bell Lightbox is generously supported by contributors including Founding Sponsor Bell, the Province of Ontario, the Government of Canada, the City of Toronto, the Reitman family (Ivan Reitman, Agi Mandel and Susan Michaels), The Daniels Corporation and RBC. For more information, visit tiff.net.