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2010 Toronto Int. Film Festival Predictions

You’d think a festival with 300 + film title offerings would pretty much covers all bases, but I think there’ll be more broken hearts than usual as a result of the unbalanced production year that was 2009. Like a vintage year for wine, Toronto International Film Festival co-directors Piers Handling and Cameron Bailey should see in 2010, a significantly higher number of World and North American premieres (loads from Cannes and Venice) than previous years for the 35th edition.

You’d think a festival with 300 + film title offerings would pretty much covers all bases, but I think there’ll be more broken hearts than usual as a result of the unbalanced production year that was 2009. Like a vintage year for wine, Toronto International Film Festival co-directors Piers Handling and Cameron Bailey should see in 2010, a significantly higher number of World and North American premieres (loads from Cannes and Venice) than previous years for the 35th edition. I’m guessing that fests like Telluride, NYFF and London will manage to grab their share of the spotlight in terms of world preems as well. The first press conference takes place on the 27th of this month, I’ll be on hand to report on the first batch of titles and I figure that the predicted films below will be offered come September 9th to the 19th. 

Opening Film Prediction: Richard J. Lewis’ Barney’s Version
Last year they broke with tradition, going instead with a Brit film (Creation), and though they’ll once again have many films representing the fish and chips nation, I think they’ll go with a Canuck offering this year. Bailey and Handling are probably narrowing down the field as we speak, but my guess is you can’t go wrong with a Canadian icon in author Mordecai Richler’s classic novel. It would serve as a great launching pad for the film that comes equipped with a colorful ensemble cast with Paul Giamatti in the lead role.

*** Update: The opening film is Michael McGowan’s Score: A Hockey Musical. Barney’s Version is expected to have a Gala screening on the 12th.

Galas and Special Presentations
In order to run such a huge event – you need bread and butter red carpet screenings. Here are some films that could logically be fitted in either category, and the reason why the producers/distributors would bring the title to TIFF.

All Good Things – Andrew Jarecki: Seeking Domestic Deal + Critical Support
Bagman – George Hickenlooper: Theatrical Release Tie-in 
The Beaver – Jodie Foster: Early Word of Mouth + Double down on Mel Gibson Fiasco
The Conspirator – Robert Redford: Seeking Domestic Deal 
Conviction – Tony Goldwyn: Awards Season Strategy 
The Debt – John Madden: Generating Brand Awareness 
The Details – Jacob Aaron Estes: Seeking Domestic Deal + Critical Support
Devil – Dowdle Bros.: Theatrical Release Tie-in
Easy A – Will Gluck: Theatrical Release Tie-in
The Fighter – David O. Russell: Award Season Strategy 
Hereafter – Clint Eastwood: Theatrical Release Tie-in
The Hungry Rabbit Jumps – Roger Donaldson: Seeking Domestic Deal
I Saw The Devil – Kim Jee-woon: Seeking Domestic Deal + Seeking Brand Awareness 
I’m Still Here: The Lost Year of Joaquin Phoenix – Casey Affleck: Critical Support
Incendies – Denis Villeneuve: Critical Support 
It’s Kind of a Funny Story – Ryan Fleck: Generating Early Buzz  
The King’s Speech – Tom Hooper: Award Season Strategy 
Last Night – Massy Tadjedin: Building Brand Awareness 
Little White Lies (Les Petits Mouchoirs) – Guillaume Canet: Critical Support 
London Boulevard – William Monahan: Seeking Domestic Deal
Love and Other Drugs – Edward Zwick: Awards Season Strategy
Main Street – John Doyle: Seeking Domestic Deal  
Made in Dagenham – Nigel Cole: Award Season Strategy
Margaret
– Kenneth Lonergan: Critical Support 
Morning Glory – Roger Michell: Generating Early Buzz 
Never Let Me Go – Mark Romanek: Theatrical Release Tie-in
The Next Three Days – Paul Haggis: Theatrical Release Tie-in  
Oranges and Sunshine – Jim Loach: Building Brand Awareness
Passion Play – Mitch Glazer: Seeking Domestic Deal
Perfect Sense – David Mackenzie: Seeking Domestic Deal
Red Tails – Anthony Hemingway: Seeking Domestic Deal
Reign of Assassins – Chao-Pin Su: Generating Early Buzz 
Rum Diary – Bruce Robinson: Seeking Domestic Deal
Stone – John Curran: Theatrical Release Tie-in 
The Tempest – Julie Taymor: Generating Early Buzz 
The Town – Ben Affleck: Awards Season Strategy 
The Whistleblower – Larysa Kondracki: Building Brand Awareness 
What’s Wrong With Virginia? – Dustin Lance Black: Seeking Domestic Deal  

The Masters, Midnight Madness, Contemporary World Cinema, Real to Reel, Discovery, Visions and my favorite section Vanguard are a mix of previously premiered titles from other festivals, but I’m expecting these titles to make their world/international premieres in Toronto. 

22nd of May – Koen Mortier
A Cat In Paris – Alain Gagnol
At Ellen’s Age – Pia Marais (Locarno Selection)
Circumstance – Maryam Keshavaraz
Cirkus Columbia – Danis Tanovic
Cold Fish – Shion Sono
Contre toi – Lola Doillon
Even the Rain – Iciar Bollain
The Foxhounds – Jeff Prosserman
Home For Christmas – Bent Hamer
King of Devil’s Island – Marius Holst
La Vida Util – Federico Veiroj
Lullaby For Pi – Benoît Philippon
Mother’s Day – Darren Lynn Bousman
Poll – Chris Kraus
Prey – Antoine Blossier
Snow Flower and the Secret Fan – Wayne Wang
Stretch – Charles De Meaux
Svinalangorna – Pernilla August
Trigger – Bruce McDonald
Vanishing on 7th Street – Brad Anderson
We Are The Night – Dennis Gansel
With Love…From the Age of Reason – Yann Samuell.
Womb – Benedek Fliegauf (Locarno Selection)

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Eric Lavallée is the founder, CEO, editor-in-chief, film journalist, and critic at IONCINEMA.com, established in 2000. A regular at Sundance, Cannes, and Venice, Eric holds a BFA in film studies from the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema. In 2013, he served on the narrative competition jury at the SXSW Film Festival. He was an associate producer on Mark Jackson’s "This Teacher" (2018 LA Film Festival, 2018 BFI London). In 2022, he was a New Flesh Juror for Best First Feature at the Fantasia International Film Festival. Current top films for 2023 include The Zone of Interest (Glazer), Inside the Yellow Cocoon Shell (Pham Thien An), Totem (Lila Avilés), La Chimera (Alice Rohrwacher), All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt (Raven Jackson).

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