Toronto title wave

Sayles, Solondz pix making splash at fest

Corrections were made to this article on July 14, 2004.

John Sayles, Todd Solondz, Roger Michell, Terry George and Taylor Hackford are among the filmmakers who will bring their newest works to the 29th annual Toronto Film Festival, which runs Sept. 9-18.

This year’s event, overseen by festival co-director Noah Cowan and managing director Michele Maheux, will also focus on films from and about South Africa and offer a number of high-profile darlings from this year’s Sundance and Cannes fests.

These include Zhang Yimou’s “House of Flying Daggers,” which will have its North American premiere as a gala presentation. The martial arts actioner bowed at Cannes, where Sony Picture Classics picked up domestic rights. Focus Intl. holds foreign rights.

Toronto will also host the Canadian premiere of Jonathan Caouette’s feature debut “Tarnation,” which was the toast of both Sundance and Cannes’ Directors Fortnight. Wellspring holds worldwide rights on the pic.

In the contemporary world cinema program is Nicole Kassell’s feature bow “The Woodsman.” The Kevin Bacon starrer debuted at Sundance; Newmarket Films will release the film in the U.S. Dec. 24.

Making its world premiere in a special presentation is John Sayles’ “Silver City,” which will be distribbed in North America by Newmarket Films. Myriad Pictures holds foreign.

Seeking distribution is Solondz’s “Palindromes,” the helmer’s first feature since “Storytelling” in 2001. World preeming pic, the story of a teen runaway, stars Jennifer Jason Leigh and Ellen Barkin.

The cast for Michell’s ensembler “Enduring Love” includes Samantha Morton and Rhys Ifans. Co-financed by Pathe PicturesPathe Pictures and Film Four, it’s being distributed in North America by Paramount Classics.

Taylor Hackford’s “Ray,” the Jamie Foxx starrer about the life of the late musical great Ray Charles, is a world premiere gala presentation. Universal Pictures is distributing worldwide rights to the Crusader Entertainment production.

Don Cheadle and Nick Nolte star in Terry George’s “Hotel Rwanda,” another special presentation world premiere. United Artists holds domestic, with Lions Gate Films handling foreign.

Laura Linney and Topher Grace star in Dylan Kidd’s “P.S.,” his sophomore feature after “Roger Dodger” in 2002. A Hart-Sharp Entertainment production, it’s also making a world premiere special presentation and will be distributed domestically by Newmarket.

“Red Dust,” set amid South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission, will world premiere as a gala presentation; Hilary Swank and Chiwetel Ejiofor star. Directed by Tom Hooper, it’s produced by BBC Films.

Films set to unspool in the international spotlight section South Africa: 10 Years Later include Zola Mesko’s “Drum,” starring Taye Diggs; Ian Gabriel’s “Forgiveness”; Teddy Matterra’s comedy “Max and Mona”; and Ramadan Suleman’s “Zulu Love Letter.”

Darrell James Roodt’s AIDS tale “Yesterday,” another South African film and the first feature shot in the Zulu language, will bow in a world premiere special presentation.

Godard preem

The Masters lineup will include North American premieres of Jean-Luc Godard’s “Notre musique”; “A tout de suite,” from Benoit Jacquot; fest veteran Patricio Guzman’s “Salvador Allende”; and the Canadian premiere of Chantal Akerman’s “Demain on demenage.” Confirmed for the Visions program are Francoise Romand’s “Theme je”; “A Hole in My Heart,” from Lukas Moodysson; Shinya Tsukamoto’s “Vital”; and “The Dead,” from Lisandro Alonso.

The fest’s contemporary world cinema program also includes Lucrecia Martel’s “The Holy Girl” and “Somersault,” a first feature from Cate Shortland.

Cowan will succeed Piers Handling as head of the festival. He will serve as co-director for three years before flying solo. During that period, Handling will hold the co-director title in addition to serving as CEO of the Toronto fest group.

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