Abhishek Srivastava - 50 weeks ago
The lineup for the 44th Toronto International has been announced and judging by the initial selection of films scheduled for the Gala and Special Presentations section it seems, the list is starry and packed. Jojo Rabbit - Taika Waititi’s next, after Thor Ragnorak, is part of the lineup apart from Todd Phillips’ Joker and Steven Soderbergh’s The Laundromat. Nicole Kidman, Tom Hanks, Scarlett Johansson (two films), Adam Driver, Brie Larson, Hugh Jackman will have their films screened at the festival. The biggest cheer at the festival might just be reserved for Fernando Meirelles' The Two Popes. The list of initial TIFF lineup is below.
(Meryl Streep on the set of The Laundromat)
THE LAUNDROMAT (Dir: Steven Soderbergh)
The Laundromat is based on the Panama Papers scandal and follows a group of journalist who took part in unearthing millions of files which exposed secret banking accounts of powerful men at tax havens across the world. Meryl Streep and Gary Oldman - two most powerful actors of this generation headline the cast. The film also marks Soderbergh’s fourth collaboration with writer Scott Z Burns.
(Tom Hanks in a still from A Beautiful Day in the Neighbourhood)
A BEAUTIFUL DAY IN THE NEIGHBOURHOOD (Dir: Marielle Heller)
Tom Hanks will be seen in a different avatar in Marielle Heller’s A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood. The film is based on the true story of real life friendship between Fred Rogers and journalist Lloyd Vogel. Lloyd Vogel is assigned the task to write an Esquire profile of the TV icon and after his encounters with Rogers, his views on life undergo a transformation.
(Jennifer Lopez, Keke Palmer, Constance Wu and Lili Reinhart in a still from Hustlers)
HUSTLERS (Dir: Lorene Scafaria)
Cardi B makes her acting debut with this film and is based on a New York Magazine article about a group of strippers who band together to empty pockets of their Wall Street clientele. Jennifer Lopez and Crazy Rich Asian star, Constance Wu, play strippers in the film and, for trivia sake, let's also add that it took two years for Scafaria to cajole Cardi B to sign the film.
(Renee Zellweger in a still from Judy)
JUDY (Dir: Rupert Gold)
Judy deals with Judy Garland and covers a small portion of her life when she gave a series of performances in London in 1968. Renee Zellweger steps into the title role supported by Jessie Buckley. The film is based on an Olivier-nominated play End of the Rainbow.
(Matt Damon and Christian Bale in a still from Ford V Ferrari)
FORD V FERRARI (Dir: James Mangold)
Ford V Ferrari is helmed by James Mangold who was earlier nominated for an Oscar for his screenplay of Logan. Films like Girl, Interrupted, Walk the Line, 3:10 to Yuma are part of his repertoire. The film is a piece of history and deals with American car designer Carroll Shelby and driver Ken Miles who had once joined to build a race car for Ford and then competed at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in France in 1966. Christian Bale and Matt Damon headline the cast and judging by the initial response to the trailer, things look sunny for the film.
(Rosamund Pike in a still from Radioactive)
RADIOACTIVE (Dir: Marjane Satrapi)
Radioactive deals with the love story of Marie and Pierre Curie – the duo responsible for introducing radioactive nature of elements to the world. Rosamund Pike and Sam Riley will be seen on the screen as the Pierre couple. The film is based on the graphic novel Radioactive: Marie and Pierre Curie, A Tale of Love and Fallout by Lauren Redniss. Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis, apart from earning an Oscar nomination, was also toast of film festivals across the world in 2007. Radioactive will make its premier as the Closing Night Gala Presentation on 14th September.
(Brie Larson in a still from Just Mercy)
JUST MERCY (Dir: Destin Daniel Creston)
Civil rights defense attorney Bryan Stevenson is the subject matter of Just Mercy and focuses on the case of a death row prisoner. Michael B Jordan will be seen in the title role supported by Oscar winners Brie Larson and Jamie Foxx. This film will also mark the third collaboration of Creston and Larson after Short Term 12 and The Glass Castle.
(Hugh Jackman on the set of Bad Education)
BAD EDUCATION (Dir: Cory Finley)
Bad Education is directed by Corey Finley and features Hugh Jackman in the lead. The film revolves around the largest public school embezzlement in the history of the United States. Oscar winner Alisson Janney, too, will be seen in a pivotal role. Hugh Jackman plays disgraced former Roslyn School Superintendent Frank Tassone. Tassone was sentenced to prison in 2006 for embezzling $11 million.
(Anthony Hopkins and Jonathan Pryce in a still from The Two Popes)
THE TWO POPES (Dir: Fernando Meirelles)
After having wooed audiences with his scintillating performance in The Wife last year, Jonathan Pryce is back. The Two Popes will feature two stalwarts of British cinema – Anthony Hopkins and Jonathan Pryce. The film dabbles in and explores the opposing visions of two most powerful people belonging to the Catholic Church. It would not be wrong to dub The Two Popes as the most interesting film from TIFF line up. The film is directed by Fernando Meirelles who had earlier helmed City of God and The Constant Gardner. One also needs to pay attention to writer Anthony McCarten whose recent work includes Darkest Hour, Bohemian Rhapsody and The Theory of Everything.
(Joaquin Phoenix in a still from Joker)
JOKER (Dir: Todd Phillips)
Chances are very high that Joker might just change the trajectory of Todd Phillips’ career. The trailer of the film, which was launched few months back, received universal applause and it seems Joaquin Phoenix is all set to interpret the character of Joker in a manner never seen before. The film traces the journey of Joker when his efforts to make a career in stand-up comedy came cropper. Presence of Robert De Niro is bonus.
(Liam Neeson and Lesley Manville in a still from Normal People)
NORMAL PEOPLE (Dir: Lisa Barros D’Sa and Glenn Leyburn)
Liam Neeson and Lesley Manville feature as a couple facing the possibility of death in this romantic drama. When Manville is diagnosed with breast cancer, things go South. The film is jointly helmed by Lisa Barros D’Sa and Glenn Leyburn.
(Steve Coogan in a still from Greed)
GREED (Dir: Michael Winterbottom)
Michael Winterbottom’s Greed will have Steve Coogan in role of a retail billionaire and deals with the world of super rich. Current heartthrob Asa Butterfield too is part of the film.
(Nicole Kidman and Ansel Elgort in a still from The Goldfinch)
THE GOLDFINCH (Dir: John Crowley)
The Goldfinch is headlined by Nicole Kidman and Ansel Elgort and is based on Donna Tartt’s Pulitzer Prize winning novel. The film deals with the life of a young boy which gets altered following a terrorist attack at an art museum. Luke Wilson, Sarah Polson will be seen in supporting roles.
(Taika Waititi, Scarlett Johansson and Roman Griffin Davis in a still from Jojo Rabbit)
JOJO RABBIT (Dir: Taika Waititi)
Jojo Rabbit is Taika Waititi’s next after the much loved Thor: Ragnarok. The film is a WW II drama and deals with the family of a young boy who is part of Hitler’s army. The film is based on a novel by Christine Leunens and has Scarlett Johansson in the role of boy’s mother who hides a Jewish girl in their home.
(Scarlett Johansson and Adam Driver in a still from Marriage Story)
MARRIAGE STORY (Dir: Noah Baumbach)
Marriage Story is the second film from TIFF lineup to feature Scarlett Johansson. This family drama is helmed by Noah Baumbach and features Adam Driver and Laura Dern, too, in pivotal roles.
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