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Fall Festival Wishlist: The 50 Films We Hope To See in Venice, Toronto and/or Telluride

By Indiewire | Indiewire June 20, 2013 at 10:16AM

As Cannes came to a close last month, speculation and predictions immediately loomed for what was in store for the triad of major festivals of the very early fall (or, technically, the very late summer). The 70th edition of the Venice Film Festival will run August 28 to September 7th, while Toronto will celebrate its 38th edition September 5-15. And then of course there's Telluride, which goes down on Labor Day weekend.
9

"Foxcatcher" (directed by Bennett Miller)
Both of Bennett Miller's features have played the festival circuit, and both were shown at TIFF. It then would be reasonable to assume we would get to see his latest film there as well, right? Not so fast. We haven’t seen so much as a glimpse of “Foxcatcher,” the true story of Olympic Wrestling Champion Mark Schulz and his brother Dave Schultz who was murdered by paranoid schizophrenic John duPont. Mark Ruffalo plays Dave. Steve Carell plays John. And Channing Tatum stars as Mark. If that’s not a cast to market early and often, I don’t know what would be. That being said, many of this year’s distributors have learned its best not to let your Oscar bait peak too early. Perhaps Columbia Pictures plans to let the film speak for itself. [Ben Travers]

“Gravity” (directed by Alfonso Cuarón)
The brief snippets we’ve gotten of “Gravity” do nothing but whet our appetites all the more for Alfonso Cuarón's first film since “Children of Men.” I don’t think there’s anyone who saw the haunting teaser for the science fiction space opera and isn’t dying to know what happens to an adrift Sandra Bullock. Will fellow astronaut George Clooney save her? How? Did he ever survice the crash? While “Gravity” already has an October 4 release date scheduled, its director is no stranger to the festival circuit. “Children of Men” and “Y Tu Mama, Tambien” both showed at the Venice Film Festival. Could “Gravity” as well? Hopefully all of these questions will be answered soon. [Ben Travers]


"The Grand Budapest Hotel
" (directed by Wes Anderson)
Wes Anderson returns to globe-trotting mode with this Germany-set story centered in a posh European hotel and revolving around the theft of a Renaissance painting and a much-desired family fortune, all unfolding behind a high-rolling concierge played by Ralph Fiennes. Anderson has said that great screwball comedy director Ernst Lubitsch served as inspiration for the zippy narrative, but on paper the project sounds distinctly Andersonian. Just look at that ensemble cast: Jason Schwartzman, Owen Wilson and Bill Murray are all prominently featured (of course), but the movie also features versatile performers like Jude Law, Harvey Keitel, Tom Wilkinson and Saoirse Ronan. The movie marks Anderson's return to Fox Searchlight, which didn't handle last year's "Moonrise Kingdom" but worked on his two previous features, "The Darjeeling Limited" and "Fantastic Mr. Fox." Considering those titles as a unit, it's clear that nobody marries quirk with charm better than Anderson, but his real accomplishment is making us look beyond the excessive style to see the emotion beneath the chic surface. The main ingredients in "The Grand Budapest Hotel" promise more of the same -- always a reason for excitement. [Eric Kohn]


"Her" (directed by Spike Jonze)
The next film from Spike Jonze stars Joaquin Phoenix as a writer who falls in love with his female-voiced operating system in this sci-fi/romance hybrid. Some of Hollywood's most greatest actresses round out the cast of possible "Hers" -- including Amy Adams, Scarlett Johansson, Rooney Mara, Samantha Morton and Olivia Wilde. Word has not been released about their specific characters. This will be Jonze's first film since "Where the Wild Things Are" in 2009, and is set for a November 20 release. Whether it hits the festival circuit first remains to be seen, but we'll sure be excited if it does [Madeline Raynor]

“Knight of Cups,” The Film Formerly Known As "Lawless" and “Voyage of Time" (all directed by Terrence Malick)
As usual, we don’t know when we’ll get to see the next film from Terrence Malick or what it will even be about. In this period of patience, though, we’re not waiting for him to finish a film. We’re waiting on three. The press-shy director has three projects brewing. “Knight of Cups” -- with Christian Bale and Natalie Portman -- seems like the frontrunner for the finish line, but anything could happen knowing the editing habits of Mr. Malick. We’re just hoping we get to see one make the festival rounds. [Ben Travers]

"Labor Day" (directed by Jason Reitman)
Jason Reitman had always premiered his films at Toronto's main event (in the Ryerson Theater to be specific), until he his last feature "Young Adult" broke the trend.  Will it return for his latest, an adaptation of Joyce Maynard's book "Labor Day"? We'll find out soon enough, but if it does we're in for a very promising cast including Kate Winslet, Josh Brolin and Tobey Maguire aiding Reitman in telling the story of depressed single mom who -- along with her 13-year-old son -- gives a ride to a bleeding man who ends up being an escaped convict. Paramount is releasing the film in theaters on Christmas Day, but perhaps the week after its titular holiday we'll get a sneak peak in Toronto? [Peter Knegt]

"Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom" (directed by Justin Chadwick)
There has been no shortage of films about the life of Nelson Mandela, South Africa's first black, democratically elected president. But not only is this incarnation based on Mandela's autobiography, "A Long Walk to Freedom," but producer Anant Singh had been in talks with Mandela back when he was still in prison. Singh acquired film rights to the book in 1996 when it was published, and now the film has come to fruition. Idris Elba ("Prometheus," "The Wire") stars as Nelson Mandela, and Naomie Harris ("Skyfall") stars as his wife, Winnie. The biopic will highlight Mandela's childhood, coming of age, education, and 27 years in prison. The Weinstein Company is handling, and they might want to give the film a festival launch a la some of their recent Oscar fare ("Silver Linings"). [Madeline Raynor]

This article is related to: Festivals, Wish List, The Wolf of Wall Street , Twelve Years a Slave, Nymphomaniac, Captain Phillips, August: Osage County, Diana, Monuments Men, Labor Day, Knight Of Cups, Gravity, Oldboy (Remake)






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