"I’ll say it, and this is where I toot our horn," smirks Jay Baruchel, the star of The Trotsky, premiering Friday night at TIFF. "I’ll say that we’re the saviour of Canadian film and it makes sense that the saviour or the new generation of Canadian film would open here."
The Montreal actor is in a posh Toronto hotel talking up Jacob Tierney’s smart and off-kilter high school film , starring Baruchel as Leon Bronstein, a precocious, fiercely intelligent 17-year-old who believes he is the reincarnation of Leon Trotsky. Yes, THAT Leon Trotsky.
You just can't fake this kind of friendship.
Cronenberg fave and practically Canadian thesp Viggo Mortensen and Aussie wunderkind Kodi Smit-McPhee are exchanging good-natured jabs and ribbing each other about who gets more female attention while sitting side-by-side in a Toronto hotel room talking about their TIFF 09 pic, The Road.
Despite the decidedly bleak tone of the film, based on Cormac McCarthy's novel, which follows Mortensen's The Man and Smit-McPhee's The Boy as they navigate a barren America in the wake of an unnamed atrocity, the two can't help but smile when talking about working together.
(The Canadian Press/Darren Calabrese)
Ben Barnes found out rather quickly just how territorial literary fans can be when he was cast as Oscar Wilde's titular eternally youthful, and equally damned, dandy in Dorian Gray, screening as part of TIFF 09.
"You're not blonde!" offered the British actor as an example of early criticism about not physically mirroring the character. "It's such a wonderful character arc but I did get a lot of threats from people who said, 'This is my favourite book ever, don't make a hash of it'."
Contemporary audiences will be forgiven their ignorance about Fanny Brawne and John Keats, those other star-crossed lovers whose brief but intense courtship inspired some of the most beloved writing and prolific prose ever conceived. In fact, to hear Oscar-winning director Jane Campion tell it, the other couple you're thinking of can't even hold a candle to what the 19th century lovers shared.
"It's bigger than Romeo and Juliet - they really lived. And Romeo was no poet. I think, for me, it really was one of the most powerful love stories in history."
After the one-two punch of Thank You for Smoking and Juno, writer-director Jason Reitman is back with Up in the Air, a film that delights in subverting stereotypes about romance and gender and calls into question the idea of which truly is the fairer sex.
Charismatic real-life bachelor George Clooney plays Ryan Bingham, a man who spends his waking hours racking up frequent flyer miles thanks to his job as a hired gun who coolly informs people they're losing their jobs and feels more at home in airports than in his own apartment.
But don't pity him just yet.
Bubbly, outspoken, confident and funny Gabourey "Gabby" Sidibe wants you to know that she is not the character she so fearlessly portrays in Precious: Based on the novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire, no matter how hard it is to separate the actress from the troubled young girl she brings to life.
“People think I’m Precious, which is so annoying,” she said while in Toronto to talk about the film, screening as part of TIFF. “They want to hug me and like, save me from my life and I’m like, 'No, my parents love me.’”
Before the celebs and stars rolled into town, we asked you what TIFF film you were most looking forward to seeing and a clear winner emerged.
Terry Gilliam's fantastical adventure-mystery with the equally whimsical name, The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, was victorious, winning the majority of YOUR votes, likely thanks to Heath Ledger's last on-screen role as a shady figure who quite literally drops into Doctor Parnassus' travelling sideshow and becomes entangled in the mystical world.
Brit wit Ricky Gervais has often found himself being the smartest guy in the room. And he long ago figured out the wise thing to do in many such situations: act like a boob.
"There's nothing smart and clever about being smart and clever if it offends someone," the stocky 48-year-old says during an interview at Los Angeles' Four Seasons Hotel. "In a room full of idiots, the clever one's out in the cold.
"I do like playing the out-and-out idiot, but I also like playing the guy who struggles with his intellect," adds Gervais, which — to some extent — describes his two signature characters from the groundbreaking television series he helped create. David Brent of the original version of "The Office" being the out-and-out idiot and "Extras"' Andy Millman the more nuanced fool.
|Subscribe to our RSS feed|
|Follow us on Twitter|
|Like us on Facebook|
|Find us on your Mobile Device|
|Download the Cineplex App|