TIFF 2021: Midnight Madness to open with top Cannes winner Titane

Julia Ducournau’s Palme d’Or winner Titane will open the Midnight Madness program at TIFF 2021, it was announced today.

The stylized study of people drawn into fetishistic car culture sensationalized Cannes last month, and marks a hotly anticipated return to the festival – and to Midnight Madness – for the filmmaker, whose cannibalism drama Raw played there in 2016.

You may remember two audience members reportedly passed out during the midnight screening of Raw at the Ryerson Theatre, including one who was attended to by paramedics. (Based on advance buzz for Titane, this film seems like it will be less intense.)

This year’s program will also feature the world premieres of Rob Savage’s DASHCAM, Jean Luc Herbulot’s Saloum and Kate Dolan’s You Are Not My Mother, as well as the North American premieres of Bertrand Mandico’s After Blue (Dirty Paradise) and Arsalan Amiri’s Zalava.

The festival also rolled out its TIFF Docs and Wavelengths titles: the documentary series will open with Attica, a look at the 1971 prison riot from Stanley Nelson, director of The Black Panthers: Vanguard Of The Revolution and Miles Davis: Birth Of The Cool.

TIFF Docs will also host the world premieres of Rebeca Huntt’s Beba, Eva Orner’s Burning, Gian Cassini’s Comala, Mohammed Abugeth and Daniel Carenty’s The Devil’s Drivers, Stefan Forbes’s Hold Your Fire, Penny Lane’s Listening To Kenny G, Barry Avrich’s Oscar Peterson: Black + White and Heather Hatch’s Wochiigii Io: End Of The Peace, about the opposition to British Columbia’s “controversial” Site C hydro dam project.

And the experimentally minded Wavelengths program will open with the North American premiere of Saul Williams and Anisia Uzeyman’s Neptune Frost, an Afro-futurist musical feature filmed in Rwanda.

A handful of additional titles were announced for the Special Presentations and Contemporary World Cinema programs: Bruno Dumont’s media satire France and Waltz With Bashir director Ari Folman’s latest animated project Where Is Anne Frank? will screen in the former, while Clint Bentley’s Jockey (an American generational drama starring Clifton Collins, Jr.) and Harry Wootliff’s True Things (a sexually charged drama starring Ruth Wilson and Tom Burke) will screen in the latter.

Additional information on the announced films is available on TIFF’s website. The festival will announce the rest of the 2021 slate later this month.

The 46th Toronto International Film Festival runs September 9-18.


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