Firaaq

TIFF Today: September 5, 2008

The Toronto International Film Festival has always had the reputation of a festival where big business gets done, and this year has been no different so far. Even though the festival only really officially kicked off yesterday evening, films like Serbis, Of Time and City, Pontypool, and Food, Inc. have already picked up distribution deals.

Despite it all, some industry insiders are a little alarmed that this year's festival features few, if any, leading Oscar contenders. Sure, there are some big films playing at TIFF, but most of the rumored Academy Award frontrunners have been suprisingly absent from the festival circuit.

Speaking of awards, the third annual CFTPA Producer's Award was given to producer Rob Merilees who was chosen from a list of over 30 promising and accomplished Canadian filmmakers. Congratulations to Rob, and if you get the chance, check out his film Stone of Destiny, the closing night gala at TIFF this year.

Looking for some more information about the festival today? Here are a few other TIFF headlines from around the web:

The stars are out in full force in Toronto. If you're deciding to skip the films and check out the celebs, here's a list of who's expecting to be arriving in town today:

  • Susan Sarandon
  • Willa Holland
  • Mark Ruffalo
  • Keira Knightley
  • Ralph Fiennes
  • Brad Pitt
  • Frances McDormand
  • Tilda Swinton
  • Alicia Keys
  • Dakota Fanning
  • LeBron James
  • Gael Garcia Bernal
  • Adrien Brody
  • Rachel Weisz
  • Kevin Smith
  • Youssou Ndour

Finally, if you're looking to catch a screening some time today, here are three films that have been getting some good buzz but might have slipped under your radar. If you do decide to check any of them out, let us know what you think of them!

  • Yes Madam, Sir: Meet the first woman to join the Indian Police Service
  • Firaaq: Hindus and Muslims in conflict in Gujarat.
  • Sauna: Sadism, violence, action, horror and thrills in Finland.

Happy festivaling! Keep checking blogTO over the next few days for continuous coverage of the Toronto International Film Festival.

(Photo: Still from Firaaq.)


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