Toronto Fest Announces First Round of Films -- Check Out Our 25 Most Anticipated (with Images and Trailers)

Toronto Fest Announces First Round of Films -- Check Out Our 25 Most Anticipated (with Images and Trailers)

Jul 26, 2011

The 2011 Toronto International Film Festival has announced the first round of their lineup, which includes 50 films from all around the globe. Many are premieres, but some are stopping in for screenings after playing other festivals like Venice, Sundance and Cannes. Films immediately on our radar include George Clooney's The Ides of March, Sarah Polley's Take this Waltz, Todd Solondz's Dark Horse, Roland Emmerich's Anonymous (sure, why not?),  The Duplass Bros.' Jeff, Who Lives at Home, Francis Ford Coppola's Twixt and Marc Forster's Oscar-buzzy Machine Gun Preacher.

We've posted our top 25 most anticipated from this list (with images and trailers where available) below. Let us know which films you're most looking forward to.

1. Butter, directed by Jim Field Smith, starring Jennifer Garner, Hugh Jackman and Olivia Wilde

Olivia Wilde and Hugh Jackman star in this deliciously unlikely comedy about a Midwestern misfit thrown into the hostile, high-stakes world of competitive butter carving. Also starring Jennifer Garner, Ashley Greene, Alicia Silverstone and cult-comedy favorites Rob Corddry and Kristen Schaal.


2. Moneyball, directed by Bennett Miller and starring Brad Pitt and Jonah Hill

Bennett Miller’s follow-up to 2005’s Capote stars Brad Pitt as Billy Beane, the Oakland Athletics’ general manager whose unorthodox approach to fielding a team had a major impact on the game. Jonah Hill and Phillip Seymour Hoffman co-star in this clever and compelling work of sports realism.

3. The Ides of March, directed by George Clooney, starring Ryan Gosling, Paul Giamatti, and Clooney

George Clooney is back in the director’s chair for this edgy political drama set in the days leading up to a fictional presidential primary. Clooney also stars as a Democratic candidate who schools his idealistic campaign press secretary (Ryan Gosling) in the dubious machinations of modern politics.

4. Peace, Love, & Misunderstanding, directed by Bruce Beresford, starring Jane Fonda and Catherine Keener

Australian film veteran Bruce Beresford delivers a heartfelt comedy that centres on a conservative lawyer (Catherine Keener) who, after splitting with her husband, takes her two teenage children to meet their estranged, eccentric grandmother (Jane Fonda). 

5. Take this Waltz, directed by Sarah Polley

Sarah Polley makes a welcome return to directing with her first feature since 2006 Festival favorite Away from Her. Seth Rogen, Sarah Silverman and two-time Oscar-nominee Michelle Williams star in this bittersweet story about a married woman struggling to choose between her husband and a man she's just met. 

6. W.E., directed by Madonna

Second-time director Madonna returns with W.E., featuring Abbie Cornish as Wally Winthrop, a woman in 1998 who is infatuated with the 1930s marriage of King Edward VIII (James D'Arcy) and American divorcée Wallis Simpson (Andrea Riseborough). Spanning six decades, W.E. gracefully weaves the past and present into two parallel love stories. 

7. Anonymous, directed by Roland Emmerich, starring David Thelwis and Vanessa Redgrave

Who really wrote Shakespeare's plays? In this vivid drama from Roland Emmerich, mystery swirls around the authorship of classic plays, as the back-stabbing theatre world intersects with political intrigue at the court of Elizabeth I. 

8. Coriolanus, directed by Ralph Fiennes

As director and star, Ralph Fiennes brings William Shakespeare's visceral history play to the big screen for the first time. Coriolanus is a drama for the ages, a commentary on the precarious draw of war and an auspicious directorial debut from one of the world's great classical actors. 

9. Countdown, directed by Huh Jong-ho

An exhilarating caper starring two of Korea’s top actors, Jeong Jae-Young and award-winning actress Jeon Do-Yeon, Countdown is an highly assured debut feature by Huh Jong-ho that takes the audience through an entertaining journey through the underbelly of Korea. 

10. A Dangerous Method, directed by David Cronenberg

For his third consecutive collaboration with Viggo Mortensen, David Cronenberg adapts Christopher Hampton's 2002 stage play concerning the turbulent relationship between Carl Jung (Michael Fassbender) and his mentor Sigmund Freud (Mortensen) as they struggle to treat a troubled patient (Kiera Knightley). 

11. Dark Horse, directed by Todd Solondz, starring Justin Bartha and Selma Blair

Todd Solondz creates an intimate dark comedy about a man-child whose desire for a romantic relationship runs smack into reality. 

12. The Deep Blue Sea, directed by Terence Davies, starring Rachel Weisz

Master chronicler of post-War England Terence Davies directs Rachel Weisz as a woman whose overpowering, obsessive love alienates the men around her and destroys her well-being. Based on Terence Ratigan's play, made famous by countless actresses.

13. The Descendants, directed by Alexander Payne, starring George Clooney

George Clooney plays the leader of a storied Hawaiian family as they are forced to decide what to do with their last, vast parcel of land. At the same time he learns a secret about his critically ill wife. From the director of Sideways. 


14. Drive, directed by Nicolas Winding Refn, starring Ryan Gosling and Albert Brooks

Ryan Gosling plays a stunt driver by day, getaway driver by night in this lean and mean crime thriller by the director of Valhalla Rising that won Best Direction in Cannes.

15. Elles, directed by Malgorzata Szumowska, starring Juliette Binoche

A female journalist, researching an article for the French magazine Elle on young prostitutes, is immediately drawn to two young woman. One is Polish and the other French, and while they seem normal, well-adjusted women, the stories they share with her expose the sexual fantasies of their male clients, and force the middle-aged writer to examine her own life and family. 

16. Friends with Kids, directed by Jennifer Westfeld, starring Kristen Wiig and Megan Fox

When a few members of a close group of married and single friends start to have children, it has a big impact on everyone. 

17. Hick, directed by Derick Martini, starring Chloe Moretz and Blake Lively

A Nebraska teen gets much more than she bargained for when she sets out for the bright lights of the big city 

18. The Hunter, directed by Daniel Nettheim, starring Willem Dafoe

A mercenary is dispatched from Europe to the Tasmanian wilderness by a mysterious biotech company to search for the last surviving Tasmanian tiger. 

19. Jeff, Who Lives at Home, directed by Jay and Mark Duplass, starring Jason Segel and Ed Helms

When he leaves his house on a banal errand for his mother, Jeff discovers that the universe might be sending him messages about his destiny. 

20. Killer Joe, directed by William Friedkin, starring Emile Hirsch and Matthew McConaughey

Emile Hirsch plays a desperate Texas debtor who plots to kill his mother, with help of his family (Thomas Haden Church, Gina Gershon). They hire a crooked cop (Matthew McConaughey) to do the job, but Killer Joe asks for their teenage daughter (Juno Temple) as a "retainer." 

21. Machine Gun Preacher, directed by Marc Forster, starring Gerard Butler

The true story of Sam Childers, an American drug dealing biker who turned his life around and became a crusader for hundreds of Sudanese child soldiers. 

22. The Oranges, directed by Julian Farino, starring Leighton Meester and Adam Brody

A guy falls for the daughter of a good friend, resulting in a massive upheaval for all the families involved. 

23. Pearl Jam Twenty, directed by Cameron Crowe

Acclaimed director Cameron Crowe traces the 20-year history of Pearl Jam, packed with rare footage and new interviews. 

24. Shame, directed by Steve McQueen starring Michael Fassbender and Carey Mulligan

Michael Fassbender plays a New York man confronting his sexual compulsions and the self-destructive acts of his sister (Carey Mulligan). From the director of Hunger. 

25. Twixt, directed by Francis Ford Coppola, starring Val Kilmer and Elle Fanning

Inspired by the gothic horror of Edgar Allen Poe, Coppola's latest tells the tale of a burnt-out mystery writer (Val Kilmer) who gets mixed up in murder and evil in a California town.

For the complete schedule (up to this point), head over to TIFF's official website

Categories: Film Festivals, News
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