Festival Brings Mavericks From World Of Film & Beyond To Toronto
Tilda Swinton, Neil Young, Deepa Mehta, Salman Rushdie,
Christopher Plummer, Jonathan Demme, President Mohamed Nasheed
and Francis Ford Coppola Take the Stage
Toronto - The Toronto International Film Festival® announces the complete line-up for Mavericks, a programme which gives audiences a rare opportunity to hear from notable newsmakers from around the world as they share anecdotes and engage in unforgettable conversations about their latest projects. This year, Mavericks include World Premieres of Barrymore, The Love We Make, Neil Young Life and The Island President, as well as the North American Premiere of Tahrir 2011: The good, the bad, and the politician.
In attendance this year are: filmmakers Francis Ford Coppola, Deepa Mehta, Albert Maysles, Bradley Kaplan, Jonathan Demme, Tamer Ezzat and Ayten Amin; actors Christopher Plummer and Tilda Swinton; author Salman Rushdie; President of the Maldives Mohamed Nasheed; musician Neil Young; and Sony Pictures Classics founders Michael Barker and Tom Bernard.
“This is most ambitious Mavericks section we’ve ever presented with movie-making legends, timely topics, celebrated artists from music and literature and even a sitting President,” said Thom Powers, Toronto International Film Festival Mavericks programmer. “This diverse group of guests will have audiences talking for months to come.”
Barrymore brings Christopher Plummer‟s Tony Award-winning tour-de-force stage performance to the screen in this film version of the Broadway hit adapted and directed by Erik Canuel. Acknowledged as one of the greatest actors in the world, Plummer took on the mammoth task of portraying legendary actor John Barrymore as he struggles with inner demons and the result is a breathtaking performance. Playwright William Luce‟s Barrymore opened at the Stratford Festival in 1996 before moving to Broadway, where Plummer won the Tony Award for Best Performance by a Leading Actor. In an on-stage conversation following the film, Plummer will address the full span of his remarkable career.
Deepa Mehta and Salman Rushdie
Published in 1981, Salman Rushdie‟s second novel, Midnight’s Children, which chronicles India‟s transition from British colonialism to independence, won him the Booker Prize. The book then went on to become a perennial bestseller and the core of countless university courses on postcolonial literature. For the past several years, Rushdie has been working with acclaimed Canadian filmmaker Deepa Mehta on a film adaptation of Midnight’s Children. It is a challenging task, but Mehta has already proven herself fearless in bringing to the screen films such as Fire, Earth, Water and Heaven on Earth. In this Mavericks conversation, Mehta and Rushdie will discuss bringing the story from page to screen. Having just finished shooting Midnight’s Children this summer in Sri Lanka, Mehta will also offer a sneak peek at scenes from the film. Moderated by Cameron Bailey.
In Conversation With… Francis Ford Coppola
As much as any living filmmaker, Francis Ford Coppola, a prolific writer, director, producer and innovator, has seen it all. He began his film career working under the auspices of legendary producer Roger Corman, gaining respect as a hard-working screenwriter and eventually as a director. He was already well versed in the art and craft, and the business of movies by the time of his ascent to auteur-stardom with a string of canonic masterpieces: The Godfather, The Conversation, The Godfather Part II and Apocalypse Now. Later in his career came his S.E. Hinton adaptations The Outsiders and Rumble Fish; his spectacular reclaiming of Bram Stoker in Dracula; and his recent reinvention as a maker of modestly budgeted yet utterly visionary artisanal works like Youth Without Youth, Tetro and, screening at this year‟s Festival, Twixt. Coppola‟s dogged endurance and restless inventiveness make him an inspiration as we look ahead to cinema‟s future. Moderated by Cameron Bailey.
The Island President
In this whirlwind political documentary, Mohamed Nasheed wins the presidency after a 20-year battle for democracy in the Maldives, only to face an unfathomable challenge: to save his island nation from rising seas. The Island President follows Nasheed as he takes the climate fight to backroom chambers of power in New York, London, Delhi, and finally into the fierce realpolitik of the Copenhagen Climate Conference. The film gains remarkable access to Nasheed‟s first year in office as he sets out to influence the world‟s superpowers. In this Mavericks session, TIFF presents the world premiere of The Island President, followed by a live conversation with President Nasheed and director Jon Shenk, moderated by Thom Powers.
The Love We Make
Over several weeks in October 2001, acclaimed documentary filmmaker Albert Maysles followed Paul McCartney as he prepared for The Concert for New York City, a 9/11 memorial concert he helped organize to uplift New York during a period of distinct uncertainty and vulnerability. For years the footage went unseen, requiring the passage of time to put it in perspective. Now ten years later, Maysles, along with director partner Bradley Kaplan and editor Ian Markiewicz, have emerged with a deeply intimate film that uniquely explores the roles of art and artists in time of crisis. This Mavericks event presents the world premiere of The Love We Make, followed by a live discussion with Maysles, Kaplan and members of their production team. McCartney has pre-recorded an exclusive introduction to the film. Moderated by Thom Powers.
Neil Young Life
At the culmination of Neil Young‟s solo “Le Noise” tour, director Jonathan Demme documents the legendary rocker‟s masterful return to Toronto‟s iconic Massey Hall, with concert footage interspersed with a road trip through Ontario. At sixty-five, Young retains a youthful vitality and musical curiosity that balances his wisdom and experience. Filmed over two nights and highlighting both new songs and some of the classics, Neil Young Life is a musical journey like no other. For this Mavericks event, Young and Demme will present the world premiere of Neil Young Life in the splendid Princess of Wales Theatre, followed by a live conversation. Moderated by Thom Powers.
Sony Pictures Classics: 20 Years in the Business
Sony Pictures Classics founders Michael Barker and Tom Bernard boast a roster of directors that reads like a pantheon of world talent: Woody Allen, Pedro Almodóvar, Susanne Bier, David Cronenberg, Guillermo del Toro, Norman Jewison, Ang Lee, Errol Morris, Gus Van Sant, Mike Leigh, Zhang Yimou, and the list goes on. To celebrate the company‟s twentieth anniversary, Mavericks presents a special conversation with Barker and Bernard. The discussion will be moderated by Jonathan Demme, who worked with the duo most recently on Rachel Getting Married. They have an unlimited supply of stories from behind the scenes at the Toronto International Film Festival, Cannes and the Oscars. For cinema lovers, this is a unique opportunity to hear how some of the most lauded films of our time were shepherded to success.
Tahrir 2011: The good, the bad, and the politician
On Jan 25th 2011, Egyptians woke up not expecting that the commemoration of the burning of Cairo and „Police Day‟ would turn into a revolution that would end the 30-year reign of the regime. Through social media, the new generation of Arabs and Egyptians were able to witness the atrocities that President Hosni Mubarak‟s regime had caused over the past 30 years. For 18 days, the world watched as Egyptians marched out calling for an end of the injustice, poverty, and corruption. Among this new generation, three directors decided to
tell the story in a unique cinematic point of view. The Good, directed by Tamer Ezzat, gives voice to the everyday heroes from Tahrir Square. The Bad, directed by Ayten Amin, films a rare account from four internal security officers assigned to crush the uprising. The Politician, directed by Amr Salama, offers a satirical take on “how to become a dictator in ten steps,” and a smart deconstruction of Mubarak‟s persona over his 30-year rule. In this special Mavericks presentation, the screening will be followed by a conversation with two of the Cairo-based filmmakers, Ezzat and Amin, who will offer their personal reflections on the changes taking place in their country.
Passionate cinephile and controversial movie star Tilda Swinton is one of those rare performers who has forged a relationship with Hollywood on her own terms, using her stardom to support often challenging film projects. Audiences know that a Swinton performance will give them an uncomfortable glimpse into our own frailty, and she has been richly rewarded for her honesty as an actor with multiple accolades, including an Academy Award® for Michael Clayton. Swinton has produced several exceptional films, including I Am Love, and is at the Festival this year as lead actress and executive producer of We Need to Talk About Kevin, Lynne Ramsay‟s startling new work based on a book once thought unadaptable. Swinton talks about her career in this Mavericks session moderated by Noah Cowan.
The Festival‟s Official Film Schedule was released today. It is available at the Festival Box Office and by visiting tiff.net/festival. Copies will also be distributed in The Grid on Thursday, August 25. Thursday‟s issue of the Toronto Star will contain a 24-page section on the Festival and includes the full film schedule.
Purchase Festival ticket packages online at tiff.net/festival, by phone at 416-599-TIFF or 1-888-599-8433, and in person at the Festival Box Office at 225 King St. West. Single tickets are available beginning September 3. Methods of payment include cash, debit or Visa†. The 36th Toronto International Film Festival runs September 8 to 18, 2011.
TIFF is a charitable cultural organization whose mission is to transform the way people see the world through film. An international leader in film culture, TIFF projects include the annual Toronto International Film Festival in September; TIFF Bell Lightbox, which features five cinemas, major exhibitions, and learning and entertainment facilities; and innovative national distribution program Film Circuit. The organization generates an annual economic impact of $170 million CAD. TIFF Bell Lightbox is generously supported by contributors including Founding Sponsor Bell, the Province of Ontario, the Government of Canada, the City of Toronto, the Reitman family (Ivan Reitman, Agi Mandel and Susan Michaels), The Daniels Corporation, Major Sponsor and official bank RBC, Major Sponsor BlackBerry and Visa. For more information, visit tiff.net.