Toronto Film Festival lineup loaded with Oscar hopefuls
The 35th annual edition of the Toronto Film Festival is scheduled to include the world and North American premieres of a slew of awards contenders. This year's festival is to kick off on Sept. 9 and run for 11 days.
Among the 50 titles announced Tuesday are the following films that could well figure in the contests for kudos this year:
"Another Year" -- The latest domestic drama by Mike Leigh ("Happy Go Lucky") is centered on a middle-aged couple (Jim Broadbent, Ruth Sheen) and their assorted friends and family, including a saucy alcoholic (Lesley Manville).
"Biutiful" -- Oscar champ Javier Bardem won best actor at Cannes for his portrayal of a dying father looking for redemption in this film from Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu ("Babel").
"Black Swan" -- Darren Aronofksy's psychological thriller revolves around a dancer (Natalie Portman) in competition with a young upstart (Mila Kunis) for the prima ballerina position.
"Casino Jack" -- Two-time Oscar champ Kevin Spacey portrays jailed lobbyist Jack Abramoff in this political drama from George Hickenlooper.
"The Conspirator" -- Robert Redford's film about the assassination of Abraham Lincoln features James McAvoy as a war hero defending a mother (Robin Wright) accused of aiding her son in the plot to kill the president.
"Conviction" -- Tony Goldwyn's stirring biopic stars two-time Oscar winner Hilary Swank as the crusading Betty Anne Waters, who worked tirelessly to free her wrongfully imprisoned brother (Sam Rockwell) .
"The Debt" -- Oscar champ Helen Mirren joins forces with "Avatar" star Sam Worthington for John Madden's thriller about Israeli agents on the hunt for a Nazi in 1965.
"The King's Speech" -- Colin Firth plays King George VI and Helena Bonham Carter his supportive wife, Elizabeth, in Tom Hooper's historical drama, which focuses on the work of a speech therapist (Geoffrey Rush) who boosts the king's confidence.
"Never Let Me Go" -- Mark Romanek directs this adaptation of the acclaimed novel by Kazuo Ishiguro about a trio of school friends -- Andrew Garfield, Keira Knightley and Carey Mulligan -- who grow up and apart.
"Rabbit Hole" -- John Cameron Mitchell helms the screen version of David Lindsay-Abaire's Pultizer Prize-winning play about parents (Nicole Kidman, Aaron Eckhart) coming to terms with their son's accidental death.
"The Town" -- Ben Affleck's second film as a director follows the aftermath of a bank robbery gone wrong as the gang leader falls in love with the bank manager.
"The Way" -- In his first feature since "Bobby," Emilio Estevez directs his father (Martin Sheen) as a man trying to find answers during a pilgrimage on Spain's famed Camino de Santiago route.
"You Will Meet A Tall Dark Stranger" -- Woody Allen's latest film focuses on infidelity and features a cast that includes Antonio Banderas, Josh Brolin, Anthony Hopkins, Naomi Watts and a buzzed-about supporting turn by Lucy Punch.
Image: Toronto International Film Festival logo. Credit: TIFF