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Virtual is the new norm for film festivals

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Film festivals – Venice showed some of its movies online, Toronto also decided on a partial virtual delivery of this year’s shows. Now it is the turn of the Montreal’s Festival du nouveau cinema (FNC) to replace the big screen for the small one. This event, which now presents its 49th edition, will be held from October 7 to 31.

I underline the ‘partial’ move to online screenings because all of these festivals were still able to maintain the tradition and present some of the films on the big screen. In some cases—as TIFF did and the FNC will do—also resorting to a recently rebirthed format: the drive-in.

Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) awards

The 45th edition of the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) came to an end last weekend with the screening of Mira Nair’s “A Suitable Boy.” The People’s Choice Awards was for “Nomadland,” a film directed by Chloé Zhao featuring Frances McDormand as a woman in her sixties who, after losing everything in the Great Recession, embarks on a journey through the American West, living as a van-dwelling modern-day nomad. This film also won in Venice and is already mentioned as a strong Oscar candidate. The People’s Choice Documentary Award went to “Inconvenient Indian” directed by Michelle Latimer.

Sigourney Weaver in “My Salinger Year” by Philippe Falardeau, the closing film at the Montreal Festival du nouveau cinéma

Speaking at the closing night, Cameron Bailey, TIFF Artistic Director said: “The pandemic hit TIFF hard, and we responded by going back to our original inspiration — to bring the very best in film to the broadest possible audience and transform the way people see the world through film.” And perhaps, we can say, this way of presenting movies will continue as a new trend for film festivals.

The FNC in a dual format

In the meantime, in our city, the FNC is also preparing to launch its annual event combining digital and physical screenings. One of the venues chosen by the FNC for the live screenings is Parking 11 of the Trudeau International Airport which, for the occasion, will become a drive-in. A total of four shows will take place at this location, among them a special presentation of Stanley Kubrick’s “The Shining,” a tribute to the 40th anniversary of that emblematic movie. Other films to be shown as part of special tributes will be “Total Recall” by Paul Verhoeven, and “Pink Floyd: The Wall” by Alan Parker.

Some of the new films included in the lineup are “Souterrain” by Sophie Dupuis (opening movie), “My Salinger Year” by Philippe Falardeau (closing film), “Sin La Habana” (“Without Havana”) by Kaveh Nabatian, and “Siberia” by Abel Ferrara. For the complete lineup, film descriptions, venues, and ticket prices for digital and live presentations visit: www.nouveaucinema.ca

Feature image: Frances McDormand in “Nomadland” by Chloé Zhao, winner of the People’s Choice Award in Toronto, and an Oscar candidate

By: Sergio Martinez – info@mtltimes.ca

Other articles from mtltimes.ca and totimes.ca

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