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Fall Festival Wishlist: The Films We Hope To See in Venice, Toronto and/or Telluride

By Indiewire | Indiewire June 21, 2012 at 1:11PM

Even as Cannes announced its lineup, speculation and predictions loomed about what was in store for the triad of major festivals of the very early fall (or, technically, the very late summer).
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Scenes from "The Master," "Looper," "The Gangster Squad," "Argo" and "Passion"
Scenes from "The Master," "Looper," "The Gangster Squad," "Argo" and "Passion"

Even as Cannes announced its lineup, speculation and predictions loomed about what was in store for the triad of major festivals of the very early fall (or, technically, the very late summer).

The 69th edition of the Venice Film Festival will run August 29 to September 8th, while Toronto will celebrate its 37th edition September 6-16. And then of course there's Telluride, which goes down on Labor Day weekend.

A lot of high-profile films were unready in time for Cannes, including Paul Thomas Anderson's "The Master," Derek Cianfrance's "The Place Behind The Pines" and Lauren Cantet's "Foxfire." And that's just the tip of the iceberg.

It's time to let the serious speculation begin: Which films will be the mammoths of the fall festival circuit?

Among the possible, likely, or essentially assured filmmakers who will premiere at Venice, Telluride or Toronto are Ben Affleck, Paul Thomas Anderson, Kathryn Bigelow, Susanne Bier,  Brian De Palma, James Gray, Harmony Korine, Ang Lee, Terrence Malick, Manoel de Oliveira, Francois Ozon, Nicolas Winding Refn, David O. Russell and Joe Wright.

Here's a list of 50 films, all new movies that haven't played anywhere yet, and that Indiewire's editorial team hopes to see during the Telluride, Venice and Toronto.

"Anna Karenina," directed by Joe Wright, written by Tom Stoppard (from the novel by Leo Tolstoy)
The latest from Joe Wright ("Atonement," "Hanna") seems like a lock for Venice's 2012 competition given Wright's history with the event ("Atonement" premiered there), and its release date in the U.K. (September 7). Expect to see it pop up shortly after at TIFF to get the awards buzz underway, ahead of its November 9 stateside release. The film finds Wright re-teamed with his "Atonement" leading lady Keira Knightley for an expressionistic take on the Russian classic. Jude Law, Aaron Johnson and Kelly MacDonald co-star.

"Argo," directed Ben Affleck, written by Chris Terrio (from an article by Joshuah Bearman)
With an October 12 release date, expect to see Ben Affleck's third directorial offering following "Gone Baby Gone" and "The Town," to premiere at either Venice or TIFF ("The Town" premiered in Venice). The film -- starring Affleck, Bryan Cranston, John Goodman, Kyle Chandler and Alan Arkin -- is arguably Affleck's most ambitious project to date, finding the director working outside of the U.S. for a period piece based on true events. Adapted from a 2007 story in Wired magazine, "Argo" chronicles the CIA's covert operation to rescue six employees of the U.S. embassy in Tehran during the Iran hostage crisis. Affleck heads the cast as the agent who hatched the plan.

"At Any Price," directed by Ramin Bahrani, written by Bahrani and Hallie Elizabeth Newton
Ramin Bahrani ("Man Push Cart," "Chop Shop," "Goodbye Solo") is not necessarily known for working with big stars, but his latest, "At Any Price," features Zac Efron, Dennis Quaid, Heather Graham, and Kim Dickens ("Footloose").  Bahrani, a master of mise-en-scene, puts his characters in middle America, where the family's farming business is threatened, and father and son, once at odds with each other over the future of the business, must deal with an investigation into their farm. 

"The Bling Ring."
A24 "The Bling Ring."

"The Bling Ring," written and directed by Sofia Coppola and "A Glimpse Inside The Mind of Charles Swan III," written and directed by Roman Coppola
A year after their father Francis Ford's "Twixt" landed with a bit of thud in Toronto, both Sofia and Roman Coppola seem poised to bring their latest to the fall festival circuit. And their respective projects sure look interesting. Two years after controversially taking the Golden Lion in Venice for "Somewhere," Coppola could return with a film that stars Emma Watson as part of a gang of Beverly Hills burglars (its based on a real-life story... just ask Orlando Bloom).  It just wrapped, so it might not be ready in time.  Though her brother Roman seems more likely to head to Venice (or perhaps Toronto or Telluride instead) with his first film since 2001's "CQ," "A Glimpse Inside The Mind of Charles Swan III."  The film -- which stars Bill Murray alongside none other than Charlie Sheen -- is about a graphic designer's life sliding into despair when his girlfriend breaks up with him. Neither film has a release date set.

Continue to the following pages for the rest of our picks.






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