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The 50 Buzziest Films of TIFF: We Cut Through the Hype So You Don’t Have To

The 50 buzziest films of TIFF 2013

Single tickets for the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival go on sale this Sunday, September 1. The schedule, packed with hundreds of films, can make choosing what to see a rather daunting task. The solution: our guide to the 50 most talked-about movies at the festival this year, in which we scrutinize the advance hype (and the buzz from Sundance, Berlin, Cannes and Venice) to separate the must-sees from the flicks that only a mother could love.

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Features

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The insider dish on Soho House: who made the cut and who didn’t at the city’s new, exclusive private club

Soho House, the exclusive London-based members’ club, has gambled $8 million on a Simcoe Street outpost that’s the surest place in Toronto to bump into celebs

Soho House

On Wednesday, July 25, a group of 30 people gathered for a secret meeting in the boardroom of a nondescript office building on Adelaide West. Among them were the heiress Trinity Jackman, indie record exec Jeff Remedios, TIFF artistic director Cameron Bailey, interior designer Anwar Mukhayesh, Sony Music president Shane Carter and the society queen bee Ashleigh Dempster. Together they represented a cross-section of the city’s new establishment—a group that had been carefully corralled by the organizers of the London-based Soho House to help decide who deserved to be a founding member of the private club’s new Toronto outpost.

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TIFF 2012 Insider’s Guide: top 10 red carpet looks and where to find them

TIFF 2012 Insider’s Guide: what to wear

TIFF is low-key and casual, much more in line with the beach party scene of Cannes than the ball gown pretension of Venice or Berlin. Here’s how the pros walk the red carpet—a foolproof guide to looking good if you happen to be walking in behind them.

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TIFF BUZZ POLL: which film are you most excited to see?

(Images: TIFF)

After we narrowed down the 372 films screening at TIFF to the buzziest 50, we started wondering which movie sits at the top of the heap. Cloud Atlas has a stacked ensemble cast, a rousing five-minute-long trailer and some highly regarded literary source material to live up to, but On the Road has an even more beloved literary antecedent (and, in Kristen Stewart, a star with very devoted fans). Then there’s Looper, starring Bruce Willis and Joseph Gordon-Levitt, which has netted the (free) hype that stems from opening the festival. Of course, The Master has many expecting standout performances from Joaquin Phoenix and Philip Seymour Hoffman—not to mention its Church of Scientology-tinged subject matter.

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Business

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VIDEOS: our favourite Toronto-made commercials from this year’s Cannes Lions awards

The red carpet at last year’s Cannes Lions festival (Image: Digitas Photos

The Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity is an annual pat on the back for the advertising and PR industries, recognizing the most innovative works of communication (and salesmanship) from around the globe. Canada was well represented at this year’s fête, with Toronto bringing some serious creative fire of its own. We sorted through the pile of honorees and picked out our favourite ads from local agencies—they include videos of a reverse bank heist, a Cyclops doctor and a sexy apology. Click through to watch them all.

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SPOTTED: Kirsten Dunst walking Toronto’s streets

The Toronto Star is reporting that Kirsten Dunst is out and about in the city today, looking melancholy in head-to-toe black despite the fact that it’s a beautiful sunny day. We think the Melancholia star should be happy: her performance as a manic-depressive bride in Lars von Trier’s apocalyptic film is earning her some industry cred as a serious actress (Dunst won the Best Actress award for the role at the Cannes Film Festival earlier this year).

Find this story on our Star Spotting Map, where we plot the locations of celebrities spotted around Toronto.

TIFF Talk

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50 buzziest films of TIFF 2011: we slice through the hype so you don’t have to

We’ve already told you about the celebs filing into town for TIFF and the extended-licence nightspots they’ll be frequenting. But with more than 300 movies being screened, the actual “film” part of the festival can be hard to navigate. Enter our handy guide, in which we scope out the buzz on the most hotly anticipated flicks of the fest.

See all our picks and rejects »

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Culture

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Ryan Gosling to star in his own directorial debut: a remake of 1980s musical The Idolmaker

Ryan Gosling is even cooler now that he's a director (Image: friskytuna)

What can we say? We love us some Ryan Gosling. So when we heard that the London, Ontario, native has signed on to direct and star in The Idolmaker, a remake of the 1980 movie loosely based on the life of rock promoter Bob Marcucci, we got a little excited. Of course, it was only a matter of time before the multi-talented actor-producer-musician made the jump to the director’s chair, adding yet another line to his growing resume.

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Culture

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TIFF to Tinseltown: a tour of the 14 Oscar-nominated films that screened at TIFF

The Toronto International Film Festival may not have the glamour of Cannes, the street cred of Berlin or the skiing of Sundance, but it does have one thing going for it: it’s the unofficial kickoff of Oscar season. The filmmakers who come here every September to show and sell—a full five months before the awards ceremony—are well aware that they’re already in the race to the Kodak Theatre. The early jockeying often pays off: 14 of the 36 feature films nominated for Academy Awards this year screened here (the dubious likes of TRON: Legacy and Salt, for the record, did not). Before the big tally on Sunday night, we take a look at the films that embarked on their trip to the golden boy’s antechamber right here in our backyard.

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Looking back at TIFF 2010: an Alliance Films VP gives her run down of this year’s fest

Colin Firth and Helena Bonham Carter in The King's Speech

On Friday morning, Carrie Wolfe, the vice president of publicity and promotion for Alliance Films, was packing up her headquarters at the Intercontinental in Yorkville. After 11 years of building buzz for Oscar noms like Frieda, The Young Victoria and Eastern Promises out of the Bloor Street hotel, Alliance is moving its TIFF office down to King Street for 2011 to be closer to the Bell Lightbox. Though the 13-year film fest veteran was running on her final fumes of adrenaline, she offered to take a minute and share with us the people, performances and publicity coups that made her year at TIFF.

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Q&A with Carey Mulligan: Fighting with Keira Knightley, working with Ryan Gosling and eavesdropping on moviegoers

Carey Mulligan at the TIFF premiere for Never Let Me Go. (Image: Jeff Vespa/Wire Image/Getty Images)

In Never Let Me Go, she’s the plain, overlooked member of a love triangle (the others are real-life friend Keira Knightley and Andrew “New Spider-Man” Garfield), but off-screen, Carey Mulligan is a showstopper. The 25-year-old, who was a first-time Oscar nominee after last year’s TIFF hit An Education, walks into a suite at the Park Hyatt with a chic bleached-blond layered cut and TV-ready makeup that makes her look more like the movie star she is than the girls next door she usually plays. During a round-table interview, the London-born actress shows she a starlet with definite ideas about where her career is heading. Specifically, it’s heading into the role of a late-20s Latina in a Ryan Gosling movie. Maybe it’s better if Carey explains—the full interview, after the jump.

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TIFF Talk

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It’s business time: TIFF outgrows relaxed vibe, prepares for major film deals

The Hyatt Regency will be a sales hub this year (Image: Hyatt)

For most of us, TIFF is synonymous with glamorous parties and getting to see major films before the rest of the world, but for many in the industry, it increasingly means big business. According to Variety, Toronto has become the “unofficial marketplace” for the world’s top film execs to sell premium films that debut at Cannes and to launch films they’ll take to the American Film Market (AFM) in November.

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TIFF Talk

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50 Buzziest TIFF Films: what to see, what to skip and how to slice through the hype

Tickets go on sale tomorrow for all the screenings at TIFF 2010, but with over 300 titles, guessing at what film is worth the money (and queuing) is as challenging as ever. Well, fear not: our guide cuts through the hype surrounding the 50 most anticipated flicks to reveal which films are likely to give the most bang for your buck.

See our picks and rejects »

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The Informer

Features

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Snap Happy: Caitlin Cronenberg breaks from the family film business

Caitlin Cronenberg breaks from the family film business with her first book of photography, due out in July

Artist as subject: photographer Caitlin Cronenberg (Image: Cait)

If there were a reality show about the Cronenberg clan, you would likely change the channel out of boredom. This is not an insult. It’s a well-documented fact that, despite making films full of exploding heads and twisted gynecologists, David Cronenberg leads a nice, normal family life. The same can be said for his daughter, Caitlin, a photographer who releases Poser, her first book, this month. Despite her multiple piercings and tattoos (10 of them, including a quote from A Clockwork Orange across the back of her neck: “Love’s young nightmare like”), and the fact that Poser is a collection of nudes, she too is disarmingly, even defiantly, conventional. She’s extremely polite. She doesn’t drink. She takes baking classes at George Brown. She loves musicals and video games (her cat is named Link, after a character in The Legend of Zelda). She hasn’t even seen all of her father’s films because she’s heard that some of them are “really gross.” And she’s dating a lawyer—William Burroughs would roll over in his grave.

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The Informer

Random Stuff

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Mick Jagger proposes testing legalized pot in remote area—might we suggest Toronto Island?

You can't always get what you want, Mick (Image: Yury Cortés)

Mick Jagger has an idea for how to incrementally bring legalized pot to the U.K.: test legalization out on the Isle of Man. He dropped the idea on Larry King Live, saying the “captive society” should be used to “see what happens.” Alas, it turns out that the bucolic Isle of Man is pretty conservative and thus not terribly interested in the wacky schemes of a retirement-age rocker. Pity. Might we nominate Toronto Island?

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