TIFF rolls out doc, City to City and genre lineups


The Toronto International Film Festival on Tuesday morning unveiled the lineups for its documentary, City to City, Midnight Madness, kids, Cinematheque and Vanguard programs. Here are the some highlights, including in particular Canadian films.

City to City: Mumbai

The City to City spotlight on Mumbai at this year’s festival in September will feature 10 films, including the world premieres of Mohit Takalkar’s Bright Day, Manjeet Singh’s Mumbai’s King, Hansal Mehta’s Shahid and Anand Gandhi’s Ship of Theseus.

TIFF in March had announced that the festival would spotlight Mumbai in this year’s City to City program, shifting the focus from a specific urban landscape to instead showcase emerging directors that live and work in the city, whatever the locations of their films, and bringing local indie films to light, to contrast with Bollywood commercial features.

“Mumbai’s cinema today is entirely different from what it was even a few years ago. The rise of independent cinema has shifted the terrain, probing into previously taboo subjects and adopted styles that were earlier unpalatable to the Indian audience,” said TIFF artistic director Cameron Bailey in a statement Tuesday.

“Mumbai’s film industry is going through a significant change and a strong group of new filmmakers has emerged. They’re representing the evolution of their city in an interesting way. Toronto audiences are in for a treat this fall,” he added.

The full line-up is as follows:

  • The Bright Day Mohit Takalkar, India World Premiere
  • Gangs of Wasseypur – Part One Anurag Kashyap, India North American Premiere
  • Gangs of Wasseypur – Part Two Anurag Kashyap, India North American Premiere
  • Ishaqzaade Habib Faisal, India Canadian Premiere
  • Miss Lovely Ashim Ahluwalia, India North American Premiere
  •  Mumbai’s King Manjeet Singh, India World Premiere
  • Peddlers Vasan Bala, India North American Premiere
  • Shahid Hansal Mehta, India World Premiere
  • Shanghai Dibakar Banerjee, India North American Premiere
  • Ship of Theseus Anand Gandhi, India World Premiere

TIFF docs: Moon lovers, show stoppers and disco dancers

The documentary slate at this year’s festival will screen docs from Canadian directors including Simon Ennis, Barry Avrich, and, as previously reported, Jamie Kastner.

Ennis’ Lunarcy! (pictured), which follows a group of devotees to the Moon, will have its world bow, along with Avrich’s Show Stopper: The Theatrical Life of Garth Drabinsky and Kastner’s The Secret Disco Revolution.

Avrich’s feature doc follows the exploits of fallen theatrical producer Garth Drabinsky, who was sentenced to seven years in jail in 2009 after being found guilty of fraud and forgery on Livent’s books.

Denis Cote’s Canada-France copro Bestiaire will screen as part of the Wavelengths program, while Peter Mettler’s The End of Time will have its international premiere in the festival’s Masters program.

Other docs receiving their world bows in the program are Alex Gibney’s Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God, Julien Temple’s London – The Modern Babylon, Janet Tobias’ No Place on Earth, and Andrew Capper’s Snoop Dogg doc Reincarnated.

“There is great satisfaction in discovering films from new voices in non-fiction filmmaking,” said Thom Powers, lead Festival programmer for documentaries, in a statement. “Some of the most powerful stories being told are from these bold and original emerging filmmakers whose work stands strongly side by side documentary filmmaking greats Alex Gibney and Ken Burns.”

The full lineup is as follows:

  • 9.79* Daniel Gordon, United Kingdom World Premiere
  • Artifact Bartholomew Cubbins, USA World Premiere
  • A World Not Ours Mahdi Fleifel, United Kingdom/Lebanon/Denmark World Premiere
  • The Act of Killing Joshua Oppenheimer, Denmark/Norway/United Kingdom World Premiere
  • As if We Were Catching a Cobra Hala Alabdalla, Syria/France World Premiere
  • Camp 14 — Total Control Zone Marc Wiese, Germany North American Premiere
  • The Central Park Five Ken Burns, David McMahon and Sarah Burns, USA North American Premiere
  • Far Out Isn’t Far Enough: The Tomi Ungerer Story Brad Bernstein, USA North American Premiere
  • Fidaï Damien Ounouri, France/Algeria/Qatar/China/Kuwait World Premiere
  • First Comes Love Nina Davenport, USA World Premiere
  • The Gatekeepers Dror Moreh, Israel/France/Germany/Belgium International Premiere
  • The Girl from the South José Luis García, Argentina International Premiere
  • How to Make Money Selling Drugs Matthew Cooke, USA World Premiere
  • Iceberg Slim: Portrait of a Pimp Jorge Hinojosa, USA World Premiere
  • London – The Modern Babylon Julien Temple, United Kingdom International Premiere
  • Lunarcy! Simon Ennis, Canada World Premiere
  • Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God Alex Gibney, USA World Premiere
  • Men At Lunch Seán Ó Cualáin, Ireland International Premiere
  • More Than Honey Markus Imhoof, Germany/Austria/Switzerland North American Premiere
  • No Place on Earth Janet Tobias, USA/United Kingdom/Germany World Premiere
  • Reincarnated Andrew Capper, USA World Premiere
  • Roman Polanski: Odd Man Out Marina Zenovich, USA World Premiere
  • The Secret Disco Revolution Jamie Kastner, Canada World Premiere
  • Shepard & Dark Treva Wurmfeld, USA World Premiere
  • Show Stopper: The Theatrical Life of Garth Drabinsky Barry Avrich, Canada World Premiere
  • State 194 Dan Setton, Israel/Palestine/USA World Premiere
  • Storm Surfers 3D Christopher Nelius and Justin McMillan, Australia World Premiere (check out the trailer in 3D)
  • The Walls of Dakar Abdoul Aziz Cissé, Senegal International Premiere

Midnight Madness: Alphabetical death, 3D Dredd and seven psychopaths

The always action-packed genre program doesn’t disappoint this year, with a lineup of 10 films that include deathly parasites, earthquakes, a 3D exorcism comedy and 26 ways to die.

The ABCs of Death is from 26 directors including Canadians Kaare Andrews and Jason Eisener. For the anthology film, each director was assigned a letter of the alphabet, to use as inspiration for a tale of mortality, which will have its world premiere in the program.

Rob Zombie’s The Lords of Salem, a U.S.-U.K.-Canada copro – in which a coven of witches, triggered by an old vinyl record, returns to the town of Salem for blood – will also have its world bow.

Elsewhere, Eli Roth on Monday night revealed that Chilean earthquake thriller Aftershock (Nicolas Lopez), in which he stars, will have its world premiere in the program, along with Pete Travis’ Dredd 3D, which will bring the iconic masked police officer to screen.

Martin McDonagh’s Seven Psychopaths, starring Colin Farrell, Woody Harrelson, Sam Rockwell, Tom Waits, Christopher Walken and Harry Dean Stanten gets its world festival premiere at Midnight Madness, while J.T. Petty’s Hellbenders 3D and No One Lives from Ryuhei Kitamura will also screen.

The full lineup is as follows:

  • The ABCs of Death World Premiere
  • Aftershock Nicolás López, USA/Chile World Premiere
  • The Bay Barry Levinson, USA World Premiere
  •  Come Out and Play Makinov, Mexico World Premiere
  • Dredd Pete Travis, USA/United Kingdom/India World Premiere
  • Hellbenders JT Petty, USA World Premiere
  • John Dies at the End Don Coscarelli, USA Canadian Premiere
  • The Lords of Salem Rob Zombie, USA/United Kingdom/Canada World Premiere
  • No One Lives Ryuhei Kitamura, USA World Premiere
  • Seven Psychopaths Martin McDonagh, USA/United Kingdom World Festival Premiere


The TIFF Kids selection this year includes the world premiere of Andrew Stanton’s Finding Nemo 3D and  Genndy Tartakovsky’s Hotel Transylvania, for which a portion of the animation was completed out of Sony Pictures Imageworks’ Vancouver offices.

The full lineup is as follows:

  •  Ernest & Célestine Benjamin Renner, Vincent Patar, Stéphane Aubier, France/Belgium/Luxembourg North American Premiere
  • Finding Nemo 3D Andrew Stanton, Lee Unkrich, USA/Australia World Premiere
  •  Hotel Transylvania Genndy Tartakovsky, USA World Premiere
  • Igor & the Cranes’ Journey Evgeny Ruman, Israel/Poland/Germany World Premiere


Canadian electronic-dance-punk musician Peaches (Merrill Beth Nisker) is the focus of Peaches Does Herself, which will have its world bow in the festival’s Vanguard program.

Also getting their world premieres in the cutting-edge cinema selection are Zhang Yuan’s Beijing Flickers, Adrian Garcia Bogliano’s Here Comes the Devil, Juan Carlos Medina’s Painless and Eva Sorhaug’s 90 Minutes.

The full lineup is as follows:

  •  90 Minutes Eva Sørhaug, Norway World Premiere
  •  Beijing Flickers Zhang Yuan, China World Premiere
  • Berberian Sound Studio Peter Strickland, United Kingdom North American Premiere
  •  Blondie Jesper Ganslandt, Sweden North American Premiere
  •  Here Comes the Devil Adrian Garcia Bogliano, Mexico/Argentina World Premiere
  •  iLL Manors Ben Drew, United Kingdom International Premiere
  • Motorway Soi Cheang, Hong Kong North American Premiere
    Painless Juan Carlos Medina, Spain/France/Portugal World Premiere
  • Peaches Does Herself Peaches, Germany World Premiere
  • Pusher Luis Prieto, United Kingdom North American Premiere
  • Room 237 Rodney Ascher, USA Canadian Premiere
  • Sightseers Ben Wheatley, United Kingdom North American Premiere
  • Thale Aleksander Nordaas, Norway Canadian Premiere
  • The We and the I Michel Gondry, USA North American Premiere

TIFF Cinematheque

The program of six restored classics and one doc will feature Canadian director Larry Kent’s The Bitter Ash, along with Roman Polanski’s Tess and Alfred Hitchcock’s Dial M For Murder.

“TIFF Cinematheque is a programme we’ve been running at TIFF year-round for over two decades, and now we’re giving festival audiences the opportunity to discover or re-discover these timeless classics that have influenced generations of filmmakers,” said TIFF CEO and director Piers Handling in a statement. “The subjects, themes and emotional impact of these films are just as powerful today as when they were made,” he added.

The full lineup is as follows:

  • The Bitter Ash Larry Kent, Canada
  • The Cloud Capped Star Ritwik Ghatak, India
  • Dial M for Murder Alfred Hitchcock, USA
  • Loin du Viêtnam Joris Ivens, William Klein, Claude Lelouch, Agnès Varda, Jean-Luc Godard, Chris Marker, Alain Resnais, France
  • Stromboli Roberto Rossellini, Italy/USA
  • Tess Roman Polanski, France/United Kingdom

The Toronto International Film Festival runs Sept. 6 to 16, 2012.