The people have spoken, and they say that Steven Spielberg’s still got it. After riding through the six for two weeks of movies, this year’s Toronto International Film Festival ends with giving the 75-year-old veteran director its top honors: Spielberg’s The Fabelmans, a semi-autobiographical film about a kid in love with movies, has won the People’s Choice Award, announced at the Awards Breakfast on September 18. The cast includes all-stars Michelle Williams, Paul Dano, Seth Rogen, Judd Hirsch, Jeannie Berlin, and newcomer Gabriel LaBelle, who plays the Spielberg-inspired little boy. The win may put Spielberg on a direct path to Oscar glory — or, at least a nomination: For the past decade, every People’s Choice winner has received a Best Picture nod at the Academy Awards (and given Spielberg’s popularity with the Academy and the film’s industry-pleasing content, he could be well on his way to his 20th overall nomination with The Fabelmans). Sarah Polley’s Women Talking came in second (the cast features a bunch of heavy hitters: Rooney Mara, Claire Foy, Jessie Buckley, Ben Whishaw, and Frances McDormand, who also produced the film). Last but not least is Rian Johnson’s Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, which won third place.
In other TIFF news, Daniel Radcliffe’s Weird Al biopic, Weird: The Al Yankovic Story, earned the People’s Choice Midnight Madness Award, while Hubert Davis’s Black Ice (produced by Drake and LeBron James) — an exploration of the systemic racism that lurks in the history of ice hockey — took home the People’s Choice Documentary Award.