Monday, July 28, 2014

More from Toronto Tomorrow/The British are Coming Part One/Rumor Central: Venice

It's Monday and will be all day...


The Toronto International Film festival will announce more titles tomorrow.  According to sources, they will be announcing their Vanguard and Masters sections.  I'm assuming that there will also be additional announcements regarding Galas and Special Presentations.  That assumption is based on the fact that TIFF has done 20 Galas in each of the last three years and somewhere between 70 and 80 Special Presentations in that same time frame.  Last Tuesday they announced 13 Galas and 46 Special Presentations.  So, unless they have radically downsized, there are a lot more of that type of announcement to come as well and that's important to our attempt to sniff out Telluride-bound films.

In 2011 T-ride and TIFF shared 21 titles...8 were either Galas or Special Presentations.  In 2012 the two fests shared 22 titles with 15 as Galas/Special Presentations and in 2013 they shared 23 films with 16 as Galas/Special Presentations.

In 2011 there was a higher concentration of T-ride films in the Contemporary World Cinema and Masters sections (9).  Additionally, the two fests have commonly shared three or four documentaries.

We are already are assuming that two of the 13 Galas will have played Telluride first ("Foxcatcher" and "Wild") and five of the 46 Special Presentations ("99 Homes", "The Imitation Game", "Mr. Turner", "Rosewater", and "Wild Tales").  What that would mean in a "normal" year is that there are still about seven Galas and maybe 30-ish Special Presentations to be announce yet and that 8-10 of those additional films would play both festivals...but it's NOT a "normal" year.

All of this could be skewed this year as a result of TIFF's new "World/North American" premiere policy meaning that the Toronto program may not be as large as it customarily has been (and I have seen that suggestion in a couple of places) and/or there may not be as much overlap between the two fests as has been the norm.

At any rate, if past trends hold for the size of TIFF, they still have about a third of their program to announce as regards their Galas and Special Presentations and with TIFF's predilection to announce a film's premiere status, we'll probably be able to do some more Telluride guesswork based on what we hear tomorrow.

Finally, this note...I have a feeling that someone is going to test Toronto's mandate.  I have no real reason for that, it's just an intuition but I'm thinking someone is going to attempt the Telluride "sneak preview" that is slated as a World/North American premiere at Toronto.


For the last couple of summers I have included an analysis of certain European production companies focusing on the Brits and the French companies that are consistently connected to films that end up on the Telluride playlist.  I'm doing it again this week beginning with some of the British companies.


Here's what I have been able to track down from the last half decade vis-a-vis BBC Films at Telluride:

2008: Millions
2009: Fish Tank, Bright Star, An Education
2010: The First Grader, Tamara Drewe
2011: We Have to Talk About Kevin
2012: Ginger and Rosa
2013: The Invisible Woman

Up until Tuesday, the best guess I would have had for Telluride from what BBC Films has in its stable this year would have been Alan Rickman's "A Little Chaos" but that was announced as TIFF's closing night film so that's off the table now.  Perhaps the best BBC Film shot for Telluride this year is Michael Winterbottom's "The Face of an Angel" starring Kate Beckinsale and Daniel Bruhl.

Carol Morley's "The Falling" starring Greta Scacchi is also a possibility.

"The Face of an Angel's "IMDb page:

BBC Film's IMDb page:


BFI's past Telluride history includes:

2012: Ginger and Rosa
2013: Under the Skin

They have some involvement with the already assumed Telluride title "Mr. Turner".  Additionally, BFI also has a hand in the above mentioned "The Falling".  An additional title that might have some legs for Telluride is Debbie Tucker Green's "Second Coming" starring Idris Elba.

The best BFI shot this year is probably Ken Loach's Cannes competition piece "Jimmy's Hall" that's being distributed here in the U.S. by Sony Pictures Classics.

"Jimmy's Hall's" IMDb page:


This British production house has an even more prevalent profile for Telluride over the past decade than BBC Films does, although they were shut out in 2012.

The UK Film Council track record over the past decade:

2003: Intermission, Touching the Void
2004: Enduring Love, Merchant of Venice
2006: Venus, The Last King of Scotland, Deep Water
2007: When Did You Last See Your Father, Brick Lane
2008: Happy-Go-Lucky
2009: Fish Tank, Bright Star
2010: Tamara Drewe, The King's Speech
2011: Shame, We Need to Talk About Kevin
2013: Under the Skin

Here's the thing...the UK Film Council has no film listed that seems remotely ready for a 2014 play date.

Tomorrow a look at Film4 and See-Saw Films...


I'm doing the due diligence folks.

In an interview with Nancy Tartaglione published by last Thursday Venice head honcho Alberto Barbera told her that "He  knows that there are five titles that will world premiere in Venice this year with the filmmakers immediately hopping a plane after the screening to get to Colorado."

Venice has announced 55 films and opens Aug. 27th (two days before Telluride) with Alejandro Inarritu's "Birdman or the Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance".  Count that as one of the five.  Also count Ramin Bahrani's "99 Homes" as another.  So what might the other three be?

I'll eat my hat if Joshua Oppenheimer's "The Look of Silence" isn't one of them.

 Best bets after that (at least as far as I can guess them) are:

Xavier Beauvois' "La Rancon de la Glorie" ('The Price of Fame") starring American actor Peter Coyote.

Peter Bogdanovich's "She's Funny That Way" (the now re-titled "Squirrels to the Nuts") starring Imogen Poots, Jennifer Aniston and Owen Wilson.

Roy Andersson's "A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence".

Lisa Cholodenko's HBO mini-series "Olive Kitteridge" which stars Bill Murray and Frances McDormand. It would pair nicely if Murray's "St. Vincent" also comes to town and maybe Ms. McDormand would be inclined after her husband was one of Telluride's tribute recipient's last year..Joel Coen.

Ulrich Seidl's documentary "In the Basement".

Of course, all of this speculation could be 100% wrong...

 Barbera's interview is here:

No comments: