The 2017 Toronto International Film Festival has announced the first raft of films that will play in their prestigious Galas and Special Presentation slots. This year 3 Irish films (The Breadwinner, Mary Shelley, and Disobedience) will hope to emulate the success that Room enjoyed there in 2015.

The Toronto International Film Festival often kick starts awards season and premieres some of the best films in the world every year. We are delighted to have these two Irish films feature in key slots in the TIFF line-up.

I’m very much looking forward to international audiences embracing The Breadwinner which was produced in Kilkenny and highlights up and coming Irish director Nora Twomey whom we have supported over the last number of years as she has developed her career. ‘Song of the Sea’ had its World Premiere at TIFF before going on to Oscar nominated at the Academy Awards. Mary Shelley is a beautiful story produced by the multi-award winning Irish company Parallel Films and is a co-production which will highlight locations around Dublin and Wicklow to audiences around the world.
James Hickey, Chief Executive – Bord Scannán na hÉireann/the Irish Film Board

The Breadwinner

The Breadwinner

Kilkenny-based animation studio Cartoon Saloon return to the festival with their third feature film, Nora Twomey’s The Breadwinner.  Twomey (co-director, Academy Award®-nominated The Secret of Kells) works from a script adapted by Deborah Ellis and Anita Doron from Ellis’ novel of the same name. The Breadwinner is the story of Parvana, a young girl living under the Taliban regime in Afghanistan, who must disguise herself as a boy to become the breadwinner of the family when her father is unfairly imprisoned. A story of self-empowerment and imagination in the face of oppression, The Breadwinner also celebrates the culture, history and beauty of Afghanistan with a cast that includes many performers of Afghan descent. The film is a collaborative effort of Canada’s Aircraft Pictures, Ireland’s Cartoon Saloon and Luxembourg’s Melusine Productions in association with Jolie Pas Productions. The Breadwinner features the voice talents of Saara Chaudry (Max & Shred) in the role of Parvana, Soma Bhatia (Degrassi: Next Class) as Shauzia, Laara Sadiq (Remedy) as Parvana’s mother Fattema, Ali Badshah (The Cat In The Hat) as Parvana’s father Nurullah, Shaista Latif (This is the Life) as Parvana’s sister Soraya, and Kawa Ada (Jihad Gigilo) as Razaq.

On behalf of the entire cast and crew of The Breadwinner, I am absolutely delighted that the film will premiere at TIFF. Toronto is home to so many of our talented team and is where the idea to adapt the book was first formed. This will complete a full circle for The Breadwinner film and I hope audiences enjoy it as much as we’ve enjoyed making it.
Nora Twomey, Director – The Breadwinner

Mary Shelley

Mary Shelley

Haifaa Al-Mansour’s Mary Shelley is a biopic of Frankenstein author Mary Shelley, co-produced by Dublin-based Parallel Films (Brooklyn). Teenager Mary dreams of writing but has yet to find inspiration. When she meets poet Percy Shelley, it is love at first sight. But Percy has his secrets, he is married with a child. Setting up home together, Mary soon becomes pregnant with Percy’s child, a daughter who tragically dies. Ostracised by polite society and grieving for their child, they escape from London and Percy introduces Mary to Lord Byron at his house in Lake Geneva. On a stormy night, Byron suggests they all write a ghost story. Mary gives birth to Frankenstein’s Monster. It is brilliant, but women don’t write books, and publishers won’t print them. And so Mary fights for her creature and her identity, all at the age of eighteen. The film stars Elle Fanning as Mary and Douglas Booth as Percy, alongside Maisie Williams, Bel Powley, Joanne Froggatt and Tom Sturridge, and Stephen Dillane. Al-Mansour directs from a script written by Emma Jensen. Alan Moloney and Ruth Coady produce for Parallel Films with Amy Baer of Gidden Media. DoP is David Ungaro, Production Design comes from the legendary Paki Smith, and Room’s Nathan Nugent edits with Alex Mackie. Funding for Mary Shelley came from the Irish Film Board, the BFI, Hanway Films, the Luxembourg Film Fund, Ingenious Media, and Sobini Films.

We are thrilled that Mary Shelley has been selected for a gala screening on the Saturday night of the Toronto International Film Festival. This is an extremely prestigious slot and it’s a measure of how highly they value the film. We are extremely proud of the movie and greatly look forward to showing the world the story of this extraordinary woman who at 18 years of age wrote one of the most enduring and influential novels in the history of literature and spawned a genre that has influenced generations since. Her love story with Percy Shelley is passionate, tempestuous and extremely moving and we cannot wait to show it to audiences around the world. We are indebted to the IFB for their help in bringing the film to fruition and delighted that this movie allows us to follow up on our previous successes together.
Alan Moloney and Ruth Coady, Producers – Parallel Films

Disobedience

Disobedience

Sebastián Lelio’s Disobedience is based on the novel of the same name by Naomi Alderman, and is adapted by Lelio and Rebecca Lenkiewicz. It is produced by Ed Guiney for Dublin-based Element Pictures. The film follows young woman who returns to her Orthodox Jewish home after learning about the death of her estranged father. She causes an upheaval in the quiet community when she rekindles a repressed love with her best friend – a woman now married to her cousin. The film stars Rachel Weisz, Rachel McAdams, and Alessandro Nivola. In addition to Guiney, the film is produced by Frida Torresblanco for Braven Films and Rachel Weisz for HGS Productions. Disobedience is financed by Film 4 and Film Nation. It is an Element Pictures/ LC6 Productions / Braven Films production. Film Nation is the worldwide sales agent for the film. It will be released in Ireland and the UK by Curzon Artifical Eye and Element Pictures Distribution on May 4th, 2018.

Other Irish interest at the festival will be Martin McDonagh’s Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri which will have its North American Premiere, and Ciaran Hinds in Susanna White’s Woman Walks Ahead.

The 2017 Toronto International Film Festival takes place in the Canadian city from September 7th to 17th.

The full list of Festival ’17 films announced today:

GALAS 2017

Breathe | Andy Serkis, United Kingdom
World Premiere

The Catcher Was A Spy | Ben Lewin, USA
World Premiere

Closing Night Film
C’est la vie! | Olivier Nakache, Eric Toledano, France
World Premiere

Darkest Hour | Joe Wright, United Kingdom
Canadian Premiere

Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool | Paul McGuigan, United Kingdom
Canadian Premiere

Kings | Deniz Gamze Ergüven, France/Belgium
World Premiere

Long Time Running | Jennifer Baichwal, Nicholas de Pencier, Canada
World Premiere

Mary Shelley | Haifaa Al Mansour, Ireland/United Kingdom/Luxembourg/USA
World Premiere

The Mountain Between Us | Hany Abu-Assad, USA
World Premiere

Mudbound | Dee Rees, USA
International Premiere

Stronger | David Gordon Green, USA
World Premiere

Untitled Bryan Cranston/Kevin Hart Film | Neil Burger, USA
World Premiere

The Wife | Björn Runge, United Kingdom/Sweden
World Premiere

Woman Walks Ahead | Susanna White, USA
World Premiere

SPECIAL PRESENTATIONS 2017

Battle of the Sexes | Valerie Faris, Jonathan Dayton, USA
International Premiere

BPM (Beats Per Minute) | Robin Campillo, France
North American Premiere

The Brawler | Anurag Kashyap, India
World Premiere

The Breadwinner | Nora Twomey, Canada/Ireland/Luxembourg
World Premiere

Call Me By Your Name | Luca Guadagnino, Italy/France
Canadian Premiere

Catch the Wind | Gaël Morel, France
International Premiere

The Children Act | Richard Eyre, United Kingdom
World Premiere

The Current War | Alfonso Gomez-Rejon, USA
World Premiere

Disobedience | Sebastián Lelio, United Kingdom
World Premiere

Downsizing | Alexander Payne, USA
Canadian Premiere

A Fantastic Woman | Sebastián Lelio, Chile
Canadian Premiere

First They Killed My Father | Angelina Jolie, Cambodia
Canadian Premiere

The Guardians | Xavier Beauvois, France
World Premiere

Hostiles | Scott Cooper, USA
International Premiere

The Hungry | Bornila Chatterjee, India
World Premiere

I, Tonya | Craig Gillespie, USA
World Premiere

Special Presentations Opening Film
Lady Bird | Greta Gerwig, USA
International Premiere

mother! | Darren Aronofsky, USA
North American Premiere

Novitiate | Maggie Betts, USA
International Premiere

Omerta | Hansal Mehta, India
World Premiere

Plonger | Mélanie Laurent, France
World Premiere

The Price of Success | Teddy Lussi-Modeste, France
International Premiere

Professor Marston & the Wonder Women | Angela Robinson, USA
World Premiere

The Rider | Chloé Zhao, USA
Canadian Premiere

A Season in France | Mahamat-Saleh Haroun, France
World Premiere

The Shape of Water | Guillermo del Toro, USA
Canadian Premiere

Special Presentations Closing Film
Sheikh Jackson | Amr Salama, Egypt
World Premiere

The Square | Ruben Östlund, Sweden
North American Premiere

Submergence | Wim Wenders, France/Germany/Spain
World Premiere

Suburbicon | George Clooney, USA
North American Premiere

Thelma | Joachim Trier, Norway/Sweden/France/Denmark
International Premiere

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri | Martin McDonagh, USA
North American Premiere

Victoria and Abdul | Stephen Frears, United Kingdom
North American Premiere

Leave a Reply