30 years of Toronto Fest

A timeline

1976

  • Launch of Festival of Festivals, a public, noncompetitive event for commercial and arthouse fare. Screens 127 films.

1977

  • Debut of “Outrageous!” creates a buzz that ultimately shapes its promotional campaign, helping it become one of Canada’s biggest hits.

1979

  • Premiere of doc “Best Boy” sells out three shows, goes on to win documentary Oscar. Launch of Trade Forum, formalizes industry element.

1981

  • “Chariots of Fire” is a Toronto premiere and goes on to win the picture Oscar. Acclaim for Jean-Jacques Beineix’s “Diva” convinces European distribs to release it overseas again; pic goes on to become an international hit.

1987

  • Newly inaugurated Director’s Spotlight marks North American premiere of Pedro Almodovar’s “Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown.”

1988

  • Offbeat movie showcase Midnight Madness debuts.

1990

  • “Reversal of Fortune” premieres; Jeremy Irons goes on to win an Academy Award.

1992

  • Budding filmmakers Baz Luhrmann, Peter Jackson, Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino all screen films at the fest.

1993

  • Stephen Frears’ “The Snapper” edges out “The Piano” for the Audience Award. The Holly Hunter pic goes on to win Oscars for actress, supporting actress and original screenplay.

1994

  • Festival of Festivals officially renamed the Toronto Intl. Film Festival

1995

  • Number of films unspooling hits 300. “Leaving Las Vegas” debuts to strong acclaim. Nicolas Cage later snags the actor Oscar.

1996

  • “Shine” wins every eligible prize and caps that with an actor Oscar for Geoffrey Rush.

1998

  • “Life Is Beautiful” screens; goes on to win actor, foreign-language and original score Oscars.

1999

  • Screenings of future Oscar nominees include “American Beauty,” “The Cider House Rules,” “Sweet and Lowdown,” “Boys Don’t Cry” and “The Hurricane.”

2000

  • “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” screens; will win the foreign-language Oscar.

2001

n “No Man’s Land” and “Training Day” unspool at the fest and win foreign-language film and actor (Denzel Washington) Oscars, respectively. Fest screenings grind to a halt as Sept. 11 attacks rock the U.S.

2002

  • Lions Gate acquires horror pic “Cabin Fever” after it screens in Midnight Madness for an estimated $3.5 million, plus a $12 million P&A commitment.

2003

  • “The Barbarian Invasions,” a future foreign-language Oscar winner, opens the fest.

2004

  • “Crash” ignites bidding war, selling to Lions Gate for north of $4 million. Future Oscar winners “Ray” (actor) and “Sideways” (screenplay) debut.

More Film

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    1976 Launch of Festival of Festivals, a public, noncompetitive event for commercial and arthouse fare. Screens 127 films. 1977 Debut of “Outrageous!” creates a buzz that ultimately shapes its promotional campaign, helping it become one of Canada’s biggest hits. 1979 Premiere of doc “Best Boy” sells out three shows, goes on to win documentary Oscar. […]

  • Jennifer Lawrence

    Jennifer Lawrence to Star in Luca Guadagnino's 'Burial Rites' (EXCLUSIVE)

    1976 Launch of Festival of Festivals, a public, noncompetitive event for commercial and arthouse fare. Screens 127 films. 1977 Debut of “Outrageous!” creates a buzz that ultimately shapes its promotional campaign, helping it become one of Canada’s biggest hits. 1979 Premiere of doc “Best Boy” sells out three shows, goes on to win documentary Oscar. […]

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    The Strangest, Swankiest and Most Expensive 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' Merchandise

    1976 Launch of Festival of Festivals, a public, noncompetitive event for commercial and arthouse fare. Screens 127 films. 1977 Debut of “Outrageous!” creates a buzz that ultimately shapes its promotional campaign, helping it become one of Canada’s biggest hits. 1979 Premiere of doc “Best Boy” sells out three shows, goes on to win documentary Oscar. […]

  • Howard Gottfried

    Howard Gottfried, 'Network' Producer, Dies at 94

    1976 Launch of Festival of Festivals, a public, noncompetitive event for commercial and arthouse fare. Screens 127 films. 1977 Debut of “Outrageous!” creates a buzz that ultimately shapes its promotional campaign, helping it become one of Canada’s biggest hits. 1979 Premiere of doc “Best Boy” sells out three shows, goes on to win documentary Oscar. […]

  • Jim Broadbent Doctor Dolittle

    Jim Broadbent Joins Robert Downey Jr. in Universal's 'Voyage of Doctor Dolittle' (EXCLUSIVE)

    1976 Launch of Festival of Festivals, a public, noncompetitive event for commercial and arthouse fare. Screens 127 films. 1977 Debut of “Outrageous!” creates a buzz that ultimately shapes its promotional campaign, helping it become one of Canada’s biggest hits. 1979 Premiere of doc “Best Boy” sells out three shows, goes on to win documentary Oscar. […]

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    Five Key Questions About Saudi Arabia’s Decision to Reintroduce Movie Theaters

    1976 Launch of Festival of Festivals, a public, noncompetitive event for commercial and arthouse fare. Screens 127 films. 1977 Debut of “Outrageous!” creates a buzz that ultimately shapes its promotional campaign, helping it become one of Canada’s biggest hits. 1979 Premiere of doc “Best Boy” sells out three shows, goes on to win documentary Oscar. […]

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