The Weinstein Company
Sundance is long gone, Cannes sailed away months ago, and both Tribeca and the Los Angeles Film Festivals have cleared away until next year. But when one major film festival ends, another starts putting its lineup together, and this time, it's Canada's time to shine. The Toronto International Film Festival, which will run from September 4 until the 14, has unveiled the list of titles they'll be premiering this year, and it's packed with under-the-radar indies, highly anticipated returns from accliamed directors, and of course, several likely awards contenders. But with nearly 60 films all making their debut in Toronto this fall, it can be hard to pick out the good from the bad and the exciting from the ones you've probably seen before. In an attempt to simplify the decision-making process for you, we've highlighted some of the most exciting films to hit north of the border this fall.
The Imitation Game Who’s Involved: Benedict Cumberbatch, Kiera Knightley, Matthew Goode and Charles Dance star What It’s About: The British mathematician and computer scientist Alan Turing, who helped the Allies win WWII by cracking German codes, and was then prosecuted by the government for being homosexual. Thoughts: Finally, a cast good enough to convince you that math is interesting for two hours.
The Last Five Years Who’s Involved: Anna Kendrick and Jeremy Jordan What It’s About: A musical that tells the story of a married couple’s five-year relationship – his perspective runs from the day they met to when it all fell apart, and hers from the end back to the beginning. Thoughts: The perfect example as to why you should pay attention when your theater nerd friend tries plays you cast recordings.
Foxcatcher Who’s Involved: Bennett Miller directs; Channing Tatum, Steve Carell, and Mark Ruffalo starWhat It’s About: Based on a true story, it follows two championship wrestler brothers and the tragic consequences that they face after getting involved with an eccentric millionaire coach. Thoughts: We really are going to have to come up with the Tatum equivalent of “McConaissance” sometime soon.
A Little ChaosWho’s Involved: Alan Rickman directs; Kate Winslet, Stanley Tucci and Rickman star What It’s About: A landscape gardener finds herself struggling with the politics of Louis XIV’s court and her own demons after she’s hired to work at the Garden of Versailles. Thoughts: You had us at “Rickman.”
The Riot Club Who’s Involved: Lone Scherfig directs; Sam Claflin, Max Irons, Natalie Dormer and Jessica Brown-Findlay star What It’s About: A privileged young man is inducted into the “Riot’s Club,” an exclusive, wild group of young men full of debauchery and bad behavior, during his first year at Oxford. Thoughts: Look! It’s that guy from that thing! And that girl, from that other thing! I like them. They should be in more things.
Before We Go Who’s Involved: Chris Evans directs; Evans and Alice Eve star What It’s About: Two strangers bond over the course of one night in Manhattan, and the conflicts in their lives allow them to explore more about each other and themselves. Thoughts: Captain America is directing movies now!
Warner Bros. Pictures
This Is Where I Leave You Who’s Involved: Shawn Levy directs; Tina Fey, Jason Bateman, Adam Driver, Connie Britton and Jane Fonda star What It’s About: Four adult siblings return to their childhood home after their father dies. Dysfunction and hijinks ensue. Thoughts: Does Driver say “outer space” in this? Can we re-write the script so that he does?
Men, Women and Children Who’s Involved: Jason Reitman directs; Jennifer Garner, Adam Sandler and Judy Greer star What It’s About: A group of parents and children navigate the way the Internet has changed their relationships and lives. Thoughts: Well, it’s got be better than Labor Day, right?
Miss Julie Who’s Involved: Liv Ullman directs; Jessica Chastain and Colin Farrell star What It’s About: Set over the course of one night in the 1880s, an aristocratic woman and her father’s valet struggle for power. Thoughts: Should we also be thinking about the “Farrellissance?”
Nightcrawler Who’s Involved: Jake Gyllenhaal, Rene Russo, and Bill Paxton star What It’s About: An ambitious journalist becomes involved with the world of LA nighttime journalism, and the line between spectator and perpetrator becomes blurred. Thoughts: Oh, so this isn’t an X-Men solo film? That’s slightly disappointing.
Rosewater Who’s Involved: Jon Stewart directs; Gael Garcia Bernal stars What It’s About: The true story of Iranian-Canadian journalist Maziar Bahari, who appeared on The Daily Show before being imprisoned for five months by the Iranian government. Thoughts: This is the movie that gave us Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, and for that we shall always be grateful.
The Theory of Everything Who’s Involved: Eddie Redmayne, Felicity Jones, Emily Watson, and David Thewlis star What It’s About: The life and relationship of world-renowned physicist Stephen Hawking and his wife Jane Wilde from their first meeting at Cambridge through Hawking’s diagnosis through their numerous accomplishments. Thoughts: Oscar Season 2014: Alan Turing vs. Stephen Hawking in The Battle of the British Genius Biopics.
Whiplash Who’s Involved: Damien Chazelle directs; Miles Teller and J.K. Simmons star What It’s About: An ambitious jazz drummer who enrolls at a prestigious music conservatory, but must endure the brutal, intense tutelage of a brilliant, drill sergeant-like teacher in order to achieve greatness. Thoughts: Look, we’ll stop talking about this one once it finally comes out, and not a moment sooner, okay?
"I'm sure there will be plenty of people who will say horrible things... But you can't worry about it. People like to gossip. They bond over it. They don't bond over complimenting famous people. I'm always the first person to defend Gwyneth Paltrow. Or any woman in a position of power, like Martha Stewart or Oprah, who gets burned. Because they have paved the path for so many other women who are doing something they believe in." Actress Blake Lively refuses to listen to critics as she prepares to follow in Paltrow's footsteps and launch her own lifestyle website, Preserve.
Film producer Jay Sedrish has turned himself in to police in Georgia four days after his associates, Jody Savin and Randall Miller, surrendered to authorities for their part in the death of a camera assistant on the set of Allman Brothers biopic Midnight Rider.
The trio has been indicted on charges of involuntary manslaughter and criminal trespass in connection to the death of 27-year-old Sarah Jones, who was killed while trying to escape an oncoming train as they shot footage for the film in Wayne County in February (14).
Sedrish, the project's executive producer and production manager, surrendered to police on Thursday (17Jul14). He was released after posting $27,700 (£16,300) bond.
Miller and Savin turned themselves in on Sunday (13Jul14) and were also released. The trio faces up to 10 years behind bars for involuntary manslaughter under Georgia law.
Production on Midnight Rider was halted immediately after the tragedy.
Summit Entertainment via Everett Collection
Former James Bond Pierce Brosnan is developing a new TV drama series about The Crusades.
The actor has teamed up with Gladiator screenwriter David Franzoni and America's Spike network officials to go back in time for the new series, which will take place during the Third Crusade in the late 1100s.
The plot will centre on two Scottish knights fighting for survival in Jerusalem, according to multiple reports. It is not clear if Brosnan will appear in the drama.
Doctor Who star Colin Baker has paid tribute to British actor Ray Lonnen following his death at the age of 74. Lonnen, best known for his role in 1982 movie Harry's Game, passed away on Friday (11Jul14) after a battle with cancer.
He made a number of appearances in cult British sci-fi show Doctor Who, and the series' former star Baker is among those who have offered tributes, calling Lonnen "a really nice bloke and a good actor too".
Lonnen also appeared in U.K. TV series Z-Cars and The Sandbaggers in the 1970s, and worked on both the Indiana Jones and James Bond movie franchises, standing in for the lead actors to screen test leading ladies including Kim Basinger, who wrote him a letter of thanks following her audition for 1983 007 film Never Say Never Again.
WENN/Adriana M. Barraza
Pretty Little Liars star Ashley Benson has won a three-year restraining order against a former security guard. Last month (Jun14), the actress was granted a temporary order against 49-year-old James Gorton, Jr., and now a California judge has ruled he must stay at least 100 yards away from Benson for the next three years. Gorton, Jr. was fired from his position as a guard on the Warner Brothers lot in Burbank, California where her hit teen drama is filmed, after he allegedly told studio security officials that he had feelings for the 24 year old, and that "God instructed him to pursue her romantically". In legal documents obtained by TMZ.com, he also reportedly told colleagues he "felt a special bond" with Benson after she looked his way one day, and he believed she was silently sending him subliminal messages.
Universal Pictures via Everett Collection
Is there anything as relatable and resonant as the coming-of-age film? Throughout our lives, select few of us will ever save the world, fall in love with a computer, or beat back an ape rebellion in blockbuster fashion. But almost everyone knows what it feels like to grow up. The joys, pain, wonders, and hard truths coupled with growing older are universally felt. The best films in the genre can make us feel like they have a direct line to our souls, and the experience of watching our own truths play out on screen is something special. In celebration of Boyhood, Richard Linklater's childhood epic 12 years in the making, our staff members share their favorite coming of age films, and why they mean so much to them.
The Breakfast Club, Julia EmmanueleI wasn't yet a teenager the first time I watched The Breakfast Club, but I still remember thinking that for the first time in my life, it felt like someone really understood what growing up was like. Whether it was the terror of growing up or their struggles to be who they wanted to be, rather than what their parents expected, or the facades they put up to fit in or keep other people out, I saw some of myself in every one of these characters; I still do, despite all the years that have passed since. And even though it never alleviated my fears about becoming an adult, it did give me five people who felt the same, and that’s been enough.
Thirteen, Cory MahoneyThirteen is probably the scariest movie of 2003. Co-written by 15-year-old Nikki Reed, the film opens with two 13-year-old girls high from huffing and hitting each other. Dealing with topics from teens cutting, partying, and sexual experimentation to parents with addictions and unconventional families (to say the least), the film was at once terrifying and relatable. The memorable lines ("No bra, no panties" or "The Itsy Bitsy Spider dropped acid in the park"), like this film, will always remain in my teen memories, whether I want them to or not.
Stand By Me, Jordan SmithThe saddest part in Stand by Me is that after that epic summer day filled with leech attacks, random deer, evil Keifer Sutherland, and boyhood intimacy, Richard Dreyfuss’ voiceover explains how the four main characters couldn’t stay friends forever. How life pulled them in different directions. It’s a brutal lesson to punctuate the film with, but a vital one. Life changes. It always does. It has to. But when you’re young, everything feels like forever. All those little moments and tiny tragedies felt so sacrosanct. I swore I’d know my childhood friends forever. Who knew years later, I’d be fumbling for their names.
City of God, Shannon HoustonWith the incredible non-linear storytelling, the stunning cinematography, and all of the gangsta stuff going down, it’s easy to forget that City of God is really a coming-of-age story. I connected on so many levels with Rocket when I was 17 years old and first saw the movie in theatres. Cleveland isn’t the City of God, but I was a budding artist hoping for a way out. Watching him defy the odds, risk his life, and use his talents as a photographer to tell an incredible story that mainstream journalism couldn't tell was both empowering and inspiring.
The Goonies, Cyndi CappelloI’ll always remember the first time I watched The Goonies. Not only did I have a massive crush on Mikey, but everything about the storyline pulled me in. The older I got and more times I watched it, the more it spoke to me. I kept to myself when I was younger, and seeing the amount of trust the characters had in each other made me want to find relationships like that more than anything. Seeing the bond develop between the variously aged characters from the beginning to end of the film made me realize that you can find friendships in anyone. Thanks to The Goonies, I realized that friends can truly become part of your family.
Breaking Away, Michael ArbeiterAppropriately enough for the theme, Breaking Away is probably the only film recommendation that my mother ever gave to me. Her suggestion of the flick was inspired by my preteen proclivity to speak exclusively in Spanish and Italian phrases around our non-Spanish/Italian-speaking household, but more substantially by the "aimless, big dreaming loser" motif that she knew I'd be able to empathize with. In its paradoxical erratic lull, Breaking Away is one of the best illustrations of the graduation from childhood that we've seen on the big screen... a sweet, sad, answer-less picture that appreciates what it means to have no idea what's next.
Bond icon Sir Sean Connery has joined forces with a group of residents campaigning against plans for a major redevelopment close to his home in the Bahamas. The veteran actor became a prominent member of the Save the Bays group last year (13), which is now battling a proposal by Canadian fashion tycoon Peter Nygard to build a new complex inspired by ancient Mayan architecture.
The Scottish movie star and other Bahamas residents argue the project will threaten the ecology of the Clifton Bay area on New Providence island, and court documents filed by the group claim Nygard has progressively increased the size of his estate since 1984 through unauthorised development.
However, Nygard has hit back at the campaign to block his plans, insisting all required applications and assessments have been filed with the country's government.
Connery has lived in the Bahamas since the 1950s.
Michael J. Fox's Back To The Future hoverboard and Arnold Schwarzenegger's iconic biker outfit from The Terminator series are among the items going under the hammer in the U.K.'s biggest ever film props auction. Bosses at movie memorabilia company Prop Store are giving fans the opportunity to own some of the most recognisable items in film by holding a huge auction in London this autumn (14).
Some of the notable items include the pink hoverboard Fox used in Back to the Future Part II, the shirt worn by Sir Christopher Lee as Bond villain Francisco Scaramanga in The Man with the Golden Gun, the leather biker costume Schwarzenegger donned in Terminator 2: Judgement Day, and a coveted Golden Ticket from 1971's Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory.
Fans will be able to view the items prior to the auction when more than 300 lots go on display at the Westfield London shopping centre in Shepherd's Bush starting 1 October (14).
The exhibition lasts for two weeks until 16 October (14), when the items will go under the hammer.
Former child star Luke Bigham has been arrested and charged with domestic violence following a fight with his mother. The Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby actor was taken into custody by police in Trussville, Alabama on Tuesday night (08Jul14) after allegedly pushing his mum down a flight of stairs.
The 20 year old is being held in Trussville City Jail on $1,000 (£588) bond.
The arrest marks Bigham's second in recent weeks - he is also facing a count of reckless driving relating to a five-car pile up in Trussville on 4 June (14), when he was allegedly caught speeding before smashing into another vehicle. He is due to appear in court to answer to that charge later on Wednesday (09Jul14).
Bigham rose to fame in 2006 when he played a 10-year-old version of Will Ferrell's title character in Taladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby.
He has also appeared in two episodes of U.S. comedy series Eastbound and Down.