tiff 2021

TIFF Sets Competition Lineup, Adds Dune and Spencer to Special Presentations

Photo-Illustration: Vulture; Photos by Warner Bros. and NEON

The Toronto International Film Festival has unveiled more of its lineup for this year’s hybrid event: the 2021 Platforms Competition, Short Cuts program, and several special-event screenings. The 46th TIFF begins on September 9 and ends on September 18; the full schedule will be released on August 24. This year’s competition jury will be led by Riz Ahmed. “I am honored to be named president of the Platform jury at TIFF this year and to be a part of TIFF with Encounter,” Ahmed said in a statement. “TIFF has always been a festival that showcases bold and daring cinema on a global stage. Its commitment to celebrating small independent films, like Sound of Metal, has had such a significant impact on my career and many others. I’m looking forward to watching all of this year’s selections and working alongside my fellow jury members.”

Outside of the competition, Spencer, Pablo Larraín’s film about Princess Diana starring Kristen Stewart, will now screen as a special presentation, along with A Hero, directed by Asghar Farhadi, and Memoria, starring Tilda Swinton. Denis Villeneuve’s long-awaited Dune will officially screen in IMAX on September 11, with follow-up screenings on the 12th and 18th. Neon has already acquired the North American rights to Zhang Yimou’s One Second, which closes the festival on September 18. Based on the novel by Yan Geling, the film, starring Zhang Yi, Liu Haocun, and Fan Wei, centers on the residents of a village, including a young escaped prisoner, a sticky-fingered orphan girl, and a projectionist called Mr. Movie who is trying to restore a destroyed film reel. One Second was initially set to premiere at the 2019 Berlin Film Festival but was pulled days before. According to the Berlinale, the highly anticipated film was withdrawn for “technical reasons.” Set during the Cultural Revolution of 1966 to 1976, a sensitive subject for China’s ruling party, speculation arose that the film’s historical story line had not been approved by Chinese regulators. The movie went through reshoots and was released in China in November 2020, grossing just $10 million. Two years later, Neon is making its North American premiere a reality. Find the full list of films screening at TIFF below.

Platforms Competition
Arthur Rambo, directed by Laurent Cantet
Drunken Birds (Les Oiseaux Ivres), directed by Ivan Grbovic
Earwig, directed by Lucile Hadžihalilović
Huda’s Salon, directed by Hany Abu-Assad
Mlungu Wam, (Good Madam) directed by Jenna Cato Bass
Montana Story, directed by Scott McGehee and David Siegel
Silent Land (Cicha Ziemia), directed by Aga Woszczyńska
Yuni, directed by Kamila Andini

Gala Presentations
Belfast, directed by Kenneth Branagh
Dear Evan Hansen, directed by Stephen Chbosky
The Electrical Life of Louis Wain, directed by Will Sharpe
The Eyes of Tammy Faye, directed by Michael Showalter
Jagged, directed by Alison Klayman
Last Night in Soho, directed by Edgar Wright
The Mad Women’s Ball (Le Bal des Folles), directed by Mélanie Laurent
Night Raiders, directed by Danis Goulet
One Second, directed by Zhang Yimou
The Survivor, directed by Barry Levinson

Special Presentations
A Hero, directed by Asghar Farhadi
Ali & Ava, directed by Clio Barnard
All My Puny Sorrows, directed by Michael McGowan
Benediction, directed by Terence Davies
Bergman Island, directed by Mia Hansen-Løve
Charlotte, directed by Eric Warin and Tahir Rana
Dionne Warwick: Don’t Make Me Over, directed by Dave Wooley and David Heilbroner
Drive My Car, directed by Ryusuke Hamaguchi
Dune, directed by Denis Villeneuve
Encounter, directed by Michael Pearce
The Guilty, directed by Antoine Fuqua
I’m Your Man, directed by Maria Schrader
Inexorable, directed by Fabrice du Welz
Lakewood, directed by Phillip Noyce
Memoria, directed by Apichatpong Weerasethakul
The Middle Man, directed by Bent Hamer
Official Competition (Competencia Oficial), directed by Mariano Cohn and Gastón Duprat
Paris, 13th District (Les Olympiades), directed by Jacques Audiard
Petite Maman, directed by Céline Sciamma
Spencer, directed by Pablo Larraín
The Starling, directed by Theodore Melfi
The Story of My Wife, directed by Ildikó Enyedi
Three Floors (Tre Piani), directed by Nanni Moretti
Violet, directed by Justine Bateman
The Worst Person in the World (Verdens Verste Menneske), directed by Joachim Trier

TIFF Sets Competition Slate, Adds Dune and Spencer