CFC short film fest lineup features long list of talent

This year's sked heavily features several Canadian fiction and animation titles, and shorts starring Canadian actresses Anna Paquin and Rachel Wilson.
TheCarrier-1

The Canadian Film Centre this week released its Worldwide Short Film Festival lineup, featuring a who’s who of Canadian and international talent and 53 Canadian entries to drive home its message that shorter is better.

The Canadian talent lineup includes Anna Paquin (True Blood) and Rachel Wilson (Republic of Doyle), who will star in The Carrier and Margo Lily, respectively.

The Carrier (pictured), which also stars Rita Wilson and Chad Michael Murray, follows a grieving mother who learns a secret about her recently deceased son, and Margo Lily centres on a couple who plant a pine tree in the dead of winter.

Brits Tom Hiddleston and Dame Judi Dench lend their talents to director Chris Foggin’s Friend Request Pending, which, along with John Malkovich’s Butterflies and documentary director Errol Morris’ The Umbrella Man, will screen in the Celebrity Shorts program.

Canadian entries also feature heavily in the festival’s fiction and animation categories, at 33 and 11 selections, respectively.

Headlining in the fiction category is Scott Thompson’s comedy, The Immigrant, which is making its Canadian debut fresh off of winning the Best of the Fest award at the L.A. Comedy Shorts Film Festival.

The film, about a comedian who’s deported from the U.S. and attempts a Hollywood comeback by being smuggled across the U.S.-Mexico border, features appearances by Michael Cera and Thompson’s fellow Kids in the Hall alumnus, Dave Foley.

Joining The Immigrant in its Toronto premiere is Mardi (Tuesday), the latest from 23-year-old, three-time Cannes veteran Chloé Robichaud.

The dramedy, about university students enjoying a spontaneous skip day until a phone call changes everything, stars Julianne Côté, Maxime Laurin and Marie-Ève Milot.

The NFB has four animation entries, including Regina Pessoa’s Canada-France-Switzerland-Portugal co-pro Kali the Little Vampire, voiced by Oscar-winner Christopher Plummer, and Ray Jafelice’s Stella and Sam: “Night Fairies.”

Kali the Little Vampire tells the story of a little bloodsucker whose only wish is to make some friends, while Stella and Sam, based on the Radical Sheep Productions property, sees the siblings go on a nighttime adventure after pitching a tent in their backyard.

For more information and a full list of program selections, visit the festival’s website.

The CFC Worldwide Short Film Festival will hit screens in six different locations across Toronto from June 5 to June 10.