Filmmakers and thesps get ready for Canuck love
Airplane loads of talent are headed north for the big Toronto roundup.Fest regular George Clooney will be pulling a double shift on the red carpet for both “The Men Who Stare at Goats” and “Up in the Air.” Helmer Jason Reitman will be doing triple duty: for his “Up in the Air” and two he produced, “Chloe” and “Jennifer’s Body.” More helmers with leads in tow will include Steven Soderbergh and Matt Damon (“The Informant!”), Drew Barrymore and Ellen Page (“Whip It!”) and Werner Herzog and Nicolas Cage (“Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans”). Among those upping the gorgeous factor in Toronto will be Penelope Cruz, with Pedro Almodovar’s “Broken Embraces”; Rachel Ward with her feature helming debut, “Beautiful Kate”; Natalie Portman with “Love and Other Impossible Pursuits”; Jennifer Connelly and hubbie Paul Bettany with fest opener “Creation”; and Isabella Rossellini, in town for animated pic “My Dog Tulip” as well as her “Green Porno” installation at the Royal Ontario Museum. The large contingent of Aussies will include Jane Campion with her “Bright Star,” Abbie Cornish; “Balibo’s” Anthony LaPaglia; and helmer Scott Hicks with “The Boys Are Back.” Leading the pack of European directors will be Jean-Pierre Jeunet, Fatih Akin, Francois Ozon, Fridrik Thor Fridriksson, Gaspar Noe, Cristian Mungiu, Jan Kounen and Nicolas Winding Refn. Keisha Castle-Hughes reunites with her “Whale Rider” helmer, Niki Caro, while joining them is Vera Farmiga, who is in Caro’s “The Vintner’s Luck” and also “Up in the Air.” Jetting over from his Venice bow is Tom Ford with his helming debut, “A Single Man.” Even Oprah will head to the Great White North for the Sunday preem of “Precious,” along with her promo partner on the Sundance-winning pic, Tyler Perry. Willem Dafoe will get his “Antichrist” on, and it’s hoped that Woody Harrelson (“Defendor”) decides to lead another impromptu yoga class during the fest, as he did in 2003.