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TIFF announces 50 films starring awesome famous people who might come to Toronto

Robin Wright, shown here at TIFF last year, stars in Robert Redford's The Conspirator (Image: James Helmer)

Today’s edition of TIFF celebrity stalking is a little meatier, as co-directors Piers Handling and Cameron Bailey announced 50 films (15 galas, 35 special presentations, including 25 world premieres) and the whackitude of celebrities associated with them. We’ve got two Friends (Lisa Kudrow and David Schwimmer), the Gilmore Girls (Lauren Graham and Alexis Bledel), the Mad Men man himself (Jon Hamm), Office favourite Rainn Wilson, the ever-intriguing Winona Ryder, plus Robert Redford, Woody Allen, Helen Mirren, Natalie Portman, Javier Bardem and more. This year might just top 2009’s Oprah-Clooney juggernaut appearances. Too lazy to go through the list? The lowdown, after the jump.

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The Goods TIFF 2009

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PHOTO GALLERY: 31 TIFF red carpet looks

Jennifer Garner on the red carpet for the premiere of The Invention of Lying at the Visa Screening Room during the 2009 Toronto International Film Festival.Jennifer Garner and Julianne Moore opted for green and strapless, Amanda Seyfried chose sequins and Louboutins, and Drew Barrymore and Demi Moore did yellow in two very different ways. See the red carpet outfits these stars (and 26 others) chose for their TIFF galas in the slide show below.

TIFF Talk

TIFF 2009

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PHOTO GALLERY: Cairo Time premiere at the Visa Screening Room with Patricia Clarkson, Tom McCamus and Alexander Siddig

Patricia Clarkson on the red carpet for the premiere of Cairo Time at the Visa Screening Room during the 2009 Toronto International Film Festival. We caught up with the cast and crew of Cairo Time, which premiered yesterday at the Visa Screening Room. Check out photos of Patricia Clarkson, Tom McCamus and Alexander Siddig below.

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TIFF 2009

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Today at TIFF: September 13, 2009

Our daily roundup of the most buzz-worthy opening galas, parties and screenings.

• Woodstock free public screening, Yonge–Dundas Square, noon
My Heart Goes Hadippa (Dil Bole Hadippa) premiere, Roy Thomson Hall, 1:30 p.m.
Agora premire, Roy Thomson Hall, 1:30 p.m.
• Whip It spotlight featuring the Toronto Roller Derby League and stars of the film, Yonge-Dundas Square, 5:30 p.m.
Chloe premiere, Roy Thomson Hall, 6:30 p.m.
• Untouchable Girls showcase featuring a free show by the Topp Twinns, New Zealand’s “top yodelling comedy duo,” Yonge–Dundas Square, 9 p.m.
Capitalism: A Love Story premiere, Visa Screening Room, 9 p.m.
Whip It premiere, Ryerson Theatre, 9 p.m.
Precious world premiere, Roy Thomson Hall, 9:30 p.m.
• Norman Jewison’s annual barbecue for the Canadian Film Centre, Canadian Film Centre
• Edward Rogers’s gala fundraiser for One X One, Roger’s Forest Hill home
Whip It party (guests include Drew Barrymore and Ellen Page), Tattoo Rock Parlour
Cairo Time premiere party (guests include Patricia Clarkson and Alexander Siddig), Spice Route
Good Hair premiere party (guests include Chris Rock), One King West

TIFF Talk

TIFF 2009

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More from the party on the Bridle Path with Clooney, Bateman and a pack of goats

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Jason Batman with his lovely wife, Amanda Anka

One of the most exclusive parties at TIFF was nowhere near downtown. Instead it was in a mansion on the Bridle Path known as The Glass House where the after-party for The Men Who Stare at Goats took place.

Inside, the house was decked in bottles of Vitamin Water (they sponsored the party) while outside, two pens filled with actual goats wearing shirts that read “Don’t stare at me” greeted guests with their blue-cheese odour and menacing jumps (more on that later).

Jeff Bridges was the first to arrive on the red carpet with a handful of reporters like Lainey and Glen Baxter (we assumed most of the no-shows decided Lawrence was too much of a trip from downtown), followed by author Jon Ronson and Peter Straughan, who wrote the screenplay. The celebrity flow then slowed a bit as reporters waited for George Clooney’s arrival (he skipped the carpet and went straight into the house but left about an hour later). Jason Bateman also skipped the red carpet upon arrival but came back out to talk about the joys of fatherhood with his wife, Amanda Anka.

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Mena Suvari spent most of the Vitamin Water party playing with goats

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If she can rustle up a goat, surely she can do the same for her career

While the men may stare at goats, we were staring at them last night in the Bridle Path glass mansion that beamed Vitamin Water like an alien mother ship. On the inside, a cool and casual George Clooney mixed through the party with ease, but when asked by a fan “Can I take a photo with you?” he suavely responded, “Not a chance buddy.” Mingling in the kitchen were Jason Bateman, Patricia Clarkson and Peter Gallagher. Although earlier in the day Jeff Bridges announced to a room full of media, “I am a dolphin,” after laughing like one, he was not balancing a giant beach ball on his nose or doing happy wiggles in the indoor pool, as typically expected by the species, but rather hanging loose on a couch deep in conversation.

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Oscar buzz, vodka and stalking advice doled out at the Hazelton Hotel

To be Blunt: early rumblings suggest Young Victoria could be Emily Blunt's big break

To be Blunt: early rumblings suggest Young Victoria could be Emily Blunt's big break (Photo by chloe004)

With two weeks left until the opening gala of the Toronto International Film Festival, reporters gathered at the Hazelton Hotel to get a rundown on the buzziest films (Precious), parties (One X One), possible Oscar contenders (Mo’Nique, the woman from Soul Plane) and TIFF-inspired cocktails (Skyy vodka for all).

CTV film critic Richard Crouse said the Oprah-backed film Precious could mean a possible Oscar nomination for Mo’Nique, while co-star Mariah Carey can finally shake off the tarnished glitter from, well, Glitter. Closing film Young Victoria also got a thumbs-up and was predicted to be Emily Blunt’s big break. But the most intriguing film tidbit (and a brilliant marketing move to boot) was that everyone who went to the pre-screening of Heath Ledger’s last film, The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, had to sign a waiver that forbid them from talking about it.

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CanCon at TIFF: Atom Egoyan’s latest and Heath Ledger’s final film among newly announced titles

Even though it’s just a press conference, the announcement of TIFF’s Canadian lineup is considered to be the unofficial pre-gala kickoff for locals. Homegrown filmmakers, actors and distributors packed into the Royal York’s Imperial Room yesterday to pose for the camera and decimate the open bar and buffet table in a manner befitting this country’s underfunded film industry. Since a British film—Creationwas chosen for opening night, a Canadian project was widely expected to close the festival. Organizers didn’t disappoint. The honour went to The Young Victoria, a look at titular queen’s early years on the throne directed by C.R.A.Z.Y. filmmaker Jean-Marc Vallée. Other notable announcements included:

Atom Egoyan’s Chloe, about a wife (Julianne Moore) who hires a PYT (Amanda Seyfried) to catch her husband (Liam Neeson) in the act of cheating;
Reginald Harkema’s follow-up to Monkey WarfareLeslie, My Name Is Evilwill have its world premiere;
Terry Gilliam’s The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, the tale of a travelling theatre show staring Johnny Depp, Jude Law and Heath Ledger in his last role. A Canada-U.K. co-production, this one just squeaked into the CanCon category.

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