TIFF 2018: Toronto film fest sets first 2018 galas

By Ray Bennett

The Toronto International Film Festival today announced a list of 17 galas and 30 special presentations for the 2018 event in September. They include 21 world premieres and seven international bows with films from around the world.

Festival CEO Piers Handling said, “Today’s lineup showcases beloved auteurs alongside fresh voices in filmmaking, including numerous female powerhouses. The sweeping range in cinematic storytelling from around the world is a testament to the uniqueness of the films that are being made.”

He made the announcement via the internet as a scheduled press conference was cancelled out of respect for the victims of this week’s shooting in Toronto.

World premiers at the festival, which runs Sept. 6-16 and effectively kicks off the movie industry’s awards season, will include the British films “Red Joan” directed by Trevor Nunn and starring Sophie Cookson and Judi Dench, “Widows” starring Elizabeth Debicki and Liam Neeson adapted from the Lynda La Plante’s novel by Gillian Flynn and director Steve McQueen and “Colette” with Keira Knightley (pictured) and Dominic West directed by Wash Westmoreland. “Papi Chulo” by John Butler from Ireland will have its world premiere as a special presentation as will British filmmaker Michael Winterbottom’s “The Wedding Guest”.

Mexican Oscar-winner Alfonso Cuaron’s “Roma” will make its Canadian bow as a special presentation along with American “About a Boy” writer Ben Hedges’s “Ben Is Back” starring Kathryn Newton and Julia Roberts, Canadian Jason Reitman’s “The Front Runner” starring Hugh Jackman and Vera Farmiga, and Pawel Pawlikowski’s “Cold War”.

Oscar-winning “La La Land” director Damien Chazelle’s “First Man” starring Ryan Gosling and Claire Foy; actor Bradley Cooper’s revamp of “A Star Is Born”, in which he stars opposite Lady Gaga; and Dan Fogelman’s “Life Itself” starring British actress Olivia Cooke with Samuel L. Jackson, Oscar Isaac and Antonio Banderas; and Felix Van Groeningen’s “Beautiful Boy” starring Steve Carell and Timithée Chalamet, will be among the galas.

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