Egoyan, Vallee films among TIFF Canadian offerings

Egoyan, Vallee films among TIFF Canadian offerings

The Canadian Press
August 5, 2009

TORONTO — A sexual thriller from Atom Egoyan, Heath Ledger’s final
film, and Emily Blunt’s turn as a young Queen Victoria were among the
latest titles added to the Toronto International Film Festival lineup
Tuesday as programmers also revealed their slate of Canadian content.

The 10-day movie marathon will close with the film, "The Young
Victoria," directed by Quebec filmmaker Jean-Marc Vallee, whose
previous film, "C.R.A.Z.Y.," won the award for Best Canadian Feature
Film at the 2005 festival.

Vallee’s latest film, a UK-USA production, takes a look at the
turbulent early years of Queen Victoria’s rule, which TIFF co-director
Cameron Bailey said was marked by "instant celebrity" for the young

"This is a completely new look at Queen Victoria as a young woman,"
Bailey told hundreds of filmmakers and reporters gathered for
Tuesday’s announcement.

"It really sort of blasts away at those stereotypes of Queen Victoria
as a sort of prudish figure from history," programmer Steve Gravestock
added later.

"It’s very much a romance, quite beautifully done, also (featuring)
amazing performances and really very affecting."

The Canadian slate this year features a notably international flavour,
with Egoyan’s new thriller, "Chloe," based on the French film
"Nathalie" and starring Irish actor Liam Neeson and U.S. actress
Julianne Moore. Neeson was working on the film in Toronto earlier this
year when his wife, Natasha Richardson, died following a ski accident
near Montreal.

"’Chloe’ I think might just be, if not Atom’s best, close to it. It
really is an exceptional piece," Gravestock said.

"The film really is a portrait of high-end Toronto, about a marriage
that’s undergoing some trouble…. There’s some almost Hitchcockian
touches to it, it’s a really subtle and kind of sleek film."

Toronto actor Don McKellar stars in Dilip Mehta’s "Cooking With
Stella" as a Canadian chef transplanted to New Delhi. The screenplay
was written by Mehta’s sister, director Deepa Mehta.

"It was really exciting for me, I’d never been to India before and had
a couple of months there in Delhi and loved it," said McKellar, who
also appears in "Leslie, My Name is Evil," which screens at the

"I worked (on) knife technique, what to do with dish towels and things
like that," he says of training for the cooking film.

"There are a lot of little things that you learn in cooking school
that I had to work on."

Also coming to TIFF is the North American premiere of the Terry
Gilliam-directed "The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus," featuring the
late Ledger in his last role. It was shot in Vancouver and also stars
Christopher Plummer.

Other Canadian films backed by international star power include the
super-hero flick "Defendor," starring Woody Harrelson, Kat Dennings
and Ottawa’s Sandra Oh, and the rock ‘n’ roll vampire tale, "Suck,"
featuring cameos by Alice Cooper, Moby, Iggy Pop, and Henry Rollins.

Meanwhile, Sook-Yin Lee’s romantic comedy, "Year of the Carnivore,"
features the CBC radio host and former MuchMusic VJ playing a young
woman insecure in the ways of love.

"Cairo Time" directed by Ruba Nadda, the documentary "Hugh Hefner:
Playboy, Activist and Rebel" from Brigitte Berman, "J’ai Tue Ma Mere
Xavier Dolan" directed by Xavier Dolan, and "The Trotsky" directed by
Jacob Tierney and starring Jay Baruchel, are among other Canadian
films chosen for screenings.

Bucking tradition, this year’s festival will open with the British
film "Creation," rather than with a Canadian production.

The festival runs Sept. 10 to 19.

CTVNews/20090804/TIFF_films_090804/20090804?hub=En tertainment&s_name

From: Emil Lazarian | Ararat NewsPress

Emil Lazarian

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