Benedict Cumberbatch set to make a splash at Toronto film fest

Above: TIFF organizers have revealed the first round of films that will be featured at this year’s festival. Rob Malcolm reports.

TORONTO — This year’s edition of the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) may as well be subtitled “A celebration of Benedict Cumberbatch.”

The 37-year-old British actor, who recently appeared in the blockbuster Star Trek Into Darkness, has several films making their world debut at the festival, including 12 Years a Slave with Brad Pitt and August: Osage County co-starring Meryl Streep.

Cumberbatch also stars in TIFF’s opening night presentation, The Fifth Estate. He portrays WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange in Bill Condon’s film about Assange and his colleague Daniel Domscheit-Berg (Daniel Bruhl).

Cumberbatch is certain to walk some red carpets at TIFF and will return to the city in the winter to film Crimson Peak.

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About one-quarter of the films coming to TIFF, which runs Sept. 5-15, were announced Tuesday morning by festival director and CEO Piers Handling and artistic director Cameron Bailey.

As usual, TIFF promises to deliver star power.

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George Clooney’s Gravity, Scarlett Johansson’s Under the Skin and Daniel Radcliffe’s controversial Kill Your Darlings are also on the list of titles.

Idris Elba, who made Pacific Rim in Toronto, stars as the titular South African president in Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom.

Mia Wasikowska, currently in Toronto making Maps to the Stars, has three films coming to TIFF: The Double, Tracks and Only Lovers Left Alive. Her real-life boyfriend, actor Jesse Eisenberg, stars in TIFF presentations The Double and Night Moves.

Above: Many of the films that will be coming to TIFF were announced Tuesday morning by festival director and CEO Piers Handling and artistic director Cameron Bailey. 

Other films premiering at TIFF include Dallas Buyer’s Club starring Matthew McConaughey, Can a Song Save Your Life starring Keira Knightley, Bad Words starring Jason Bateman, Prisoners with Hugh Jackman, and Third Person with James Franco.

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The closing night film is Life of Crime starring Jennifer Aniston and Mos Def.

Enough Said, starring the late James Gandolfini, will have its world premiere at TIFF. It also stars Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Catherine Keener and Toni Collette.

Canadian directors with films at TIFF this year include Atom Egoyan with Devil’s Knot, starring Reese Witherspoon and Stephen Moyer; Don McKellar’s The Grand Seduction starring Taylor Kitsch; Jonathan Sobol’s The Art of the Steal starring Jay Baruchel; Paul Haggis’ Third Person starring Mila Kunis and James Franco; Jason Reitman’s Labor Day with Kate Winslet and Josh Brolin; and Keanu Reeves’ Man of Tai Chi.

Mike Myers will be back in his hometown for the world premiere of his documentary Supermensch: The Legend of Shep Gordon.

There are also films starring TIFF veterans Joseph Gordon-Levitt (Don Jon), Kristen Wiig (Hateship Loveship), Kristin Scott Thomas (The Invisible Woman), Nicolas Cage (Joe) and Ryan Kwanten (Mary Queen of Scots).

For a complete list of films and more information, go to

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