Toronoto 2011: Read Our Full Programme Preview

The Toronto International Film Festival 2011 (TIFF 2011) returns for its 36th year this September with a whole host of highly anticipated world premieres including Alexander Payne’s The Descendants, Bennett Miller’s Moneyball (starring Brad Pitt), Terence Davies’ The Deep Blue Sea and Luc Besson’s The Lady. Tagging along on their North American premiere route will also be David Cronenberg’s A Dangerous Method, Steve McQueen’s follow up to 2008’s superb Hunger, Shame and George Clooney’s directorial outing The Ides of March – all fresh from their upcoming Venice showings.

Elsewhere plucky lo-fi brother’s Jay and Mark Duplass follow their highly enjoyable Cyrus (2010) with a world premiere of Jeff Who Lives at Home, which is also joined by the likes of Todd Solondz’s Dark Horse and Paweł Pawlikowski’s The Woman in the Fifth. Notable Cannes favourites also are on the bill including We Need to Talk About Kevin (dir. Lynne Ramsay), The Skin I Live In (dir. Pedro Almodovar), Melancholia (dir. Lars von Trier) and Bronson director Nicholas Winding Refn’s Drive, starring Ryan Gosling.

Clooney will most probably take centre stage with his two movies The Ides of March (featuring another appearance from Ryan Gosling) and The Descendants but also adding to Toronto’s star billing will be a planned gala event for Moneyball, which sees Brad Pitt star as baseball manager Billy Beane (rumour has it this film is already in Oscar contention).

This year’s ‘Special Presentations‘ lineup includes world premieres of 50/50, starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt as a young cancer patient, and director Cameron Crowe will bring his latest documentary Pearl Jam Twenty to the gig – a feature-length presentation which takes a look back at the entire history of the band.

Alongside the Venice Film Festival 2011, this year’s TIFF lineup looks particularly strong and we can’t wait for some of these films to hit our shores.

What films are you most looking forward to as 2011 reaches its second half? Leave your thoughts and comments below.

The Toronto International Film Festival 2011 (TIFF) runs from 8-18 September.

Stephen Leach