The first round of titles premiering in the Gala and Special Presentation programmes of the 43rd Toronto International Film Festival have been announced. One Irish title is included in this first round, as director John Butler returns to Canada with his third feature, Papi Chulo.

Cast adrift in Los Angeles, Sean — a lonely TV weatherman — drives past a middle-aged Latino migrant worker standing outside Home Depot looking for work. He decides to hire this kind-looking man — to be his friend. Sean is young, gay and white; Ernesto, portly, straight and married. Despite having nothing in common, they build a sort of friendship based on sign language, until Sean becomes consumed by a deep and obsessional attraction.

U.S. star Matt Bomer, who played the lead in USA Network’s White Collar and who won a Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Series, Miniseries or Television Film in 2014 for The Normal Heart, takes the lead alongside Alejandro Patiño (The Runaways). Papi Chulo is John Butler’s third feature film, having previously written and directed The Stag and Handsome Devil, both of which premiered at TIFF. Rob Walpole and Rebecca O’Flanagan produce for Treasure Entertainment, with financing by Screen Ireland, Head Gear Films, RTE and Windmill Lane. Head Gear Films’ Phil Hunt and Compton Ross are executive producing together with Bankside’s Hilary Davis and Stephen Kelliher. Post-production is currently underway with the score being recorded today.

Of the 17 Galas and 30 Special Presentations, this first announcement includes 21 World Premieres, 7 International Premieres, 8 North American Premieres and 11 Canadian Premieres. The selection announced today includes 13 features directed by women.

We have an exceptional selection of films this year that will excite Festival audiences from all walks of life. 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.

Every September we invite the whole film world to Toronto, one of the most diverse, movie-mad cities in the world. I’m thrilled that we’ve been able to put together a lineup of Galas and Special Presentations that reflects Toronto’s spirit of inclusive, passionate engagement with film. We can’t wait to unveil these films for our audience. 
Piers Handling, CEO and Director of TIFF

This year, the Gala and Special Presentations programmes will include films by Claire Denis, Steve McQueen, Alfonso Cuarón, Barry Jenkins, Nicole Holofcener, Patricia Rozema, Damien Chazelle, Elizabeth Chomko, Zhang Yimou, Bradley Cooper, Nadine Labaki, Anurag Kashyap, Amma Asante, Matteo Garrone, Eva Husson, Jason Reitman, Lee Chang-dong, Keith Behrman, George Tillman, Jr., Olivier Assayas, and Jiang Wen.

More Festival films, including additional Gala and Special Presentations selections, will be announced in the coming weeks.

The 43rd Toronto International Film Festival runs from September 6 to 16, 2018.

The full list of Festival ’18 films announced today:

GALAS

Beautiful Boy | Felix van Groeningen, USA
World Premiere

Everybody Knows | Asghar Farhadi, Spain/France/Italy
North American Premiere

First Man | Damien Chazelle, USA
Canadian Premiere

Galveston | Mélanie Laurent, USA
Canadian Premiere

The Hate U Give | George Tillman, Jr., USA
World Premiere

Hidden Man | Jiang Wen, China
International Premiere

High Life | Claire Denis, Germany/France/Poland/United Kingdom
World Premiere

Husband Material | Anurag Kashyap, India
World Premiere

A Star is Born

The Kindergarten Teacher | Sara Colangelo, USA
Canadian Premiere

The Land of Steady Habits | Nicole Holofcener, USA
World Premiere

Life Itself | Dan Fogelman, USA
World Premiere

The Public | Emilio Estevez, USA
World Premiere

Red Joan | Sir Trevor Nunn, United Kingdom
World Premiere

Shadow | Zhang Yimou , China
North American Premiere

A Star is Born | Bradley Cooper, USA
North American Premiere

What They Had | Elizabeth Chomko, USA
International Premiere

Widows | Steve McQueen, United Kingdom/USA
World Premiere

SPECIAL PRESENTATIONS

Ben is Back | Peter Hedges, USA
World Premiere

Burning | Lee Chang-dong, South Korea
North American Premiere

Can You Ever Forgive Me? | Marielle Heller, USA
International Premiere

Capernaum | Nadine Labaki, Lebanon
North American Premiere

Cold War | Paweł Pawlikowski, Poland/United Kingdom/France
Canadian Premiere

Colette | Wash Westmoreland, United Kingdom
Canadian Premiere

Dogman | Matteo Garrone, Italy/France
Canadian Premiere

The Front Runner | Jason Reitman, USA
International Premiere

Giant Little Ones | Keith Behrman, Canada
World Premiere

Girls of the Sun | Eva Husson, France
International Premiere

Hotel Mumbai | Anthony Maras, Australia
World Premiere

The Hummingbird Project | Kim Nguyen, Canada
World Premiere

If Beale Street Could Talk | Barry Jenkins, USA
World Premiere

Manto | Nandita Das, India
North American Premiere

Maya | Mia Hansen-Løve, France
World Premiere

Monsters and Men | Reinaldo Marcus Green, USA
Canadian Premiere

Special Presentations Opening Film

MOUTHPIECE | Patricia Rozema, Canada
World Premiere

Non-Fiction | Olivier Assayas, France
Canadian Premiere

Old Man & the Gun | David Lowery, USA
International Premiere

Papi Chulo | John Butler, Ireland
World Premiere

Roma | Alfonso Cuarón, Mexico/USA
Canadian Premiere

Special Presentations Closing Film
Shoplifters | Hirokazu Kore-eda, Japan
Canadian Premiere

The Sisters Brothers | Jacques Audiard, USA/France/Romania/Spain
North American Premiere

Sunset | László Nemes, Hungary/France
North American Premiere

Through Black Spruce | Don McKellar, Canada
World Premiere

The Wedding Guest | Michael Winterbottom, United Kingdom
World Premiere

The Weekend | Stella Meghie, USA
World Premiere

Where Hands Touch | Amma Asante, United Kingdom
World Premiere

White Boy Rick | Yann Demange, USA
International Premiere

Wildlife | Paul Dano, USA
Canadian Premiere

 

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