TORONTO '99 ON THE SCENE: A Barenaked Doc and a Raging Premiere

by Mark Rabinowitz

Saturday saw me getting into the swing of things, as it always takes 24-36
hours to get one's "onthescene/festival legs." Since almost everything about my state of
mind involves food, I suspect that it's the hot dogs that are helping me
adjust to being back in festival mode after quite a long layoff. Also,
spending some time organizing screening, interview and party schedules saves
many a fragile mind during the latter days of the insanity that is a major
world film festival.

Saturday brought the world premiere reception for B's filmic
directorial debut, "Barenaked in America," an inside look at a U.S. tour by
the Canadian band Barenaked Ladies and an up-close look at the band in general. At the
party, presented by Boss Hugo Boss, Priestley was straightforward telling me
about why he chose to make this particular film his first. "It was the first
idea that inspired me to commit two years of my life to." But why a doc? "I'm
a big fan of documentaries and the documentary style," he said. In fact,
Priestley is a long-time friend of the band, and at a press conference for
the film he and the band remarked that when they were together Priestley
would often comment that someone should be rolling film. Eventually he became
tired of saying it, and picked up a camera himself. Vancouver, Canada-native
Priestley also told me that the goal from the beginning was to bring the film
to Toronto, and this would probably be the film's only festival stop. Sloss
Special Projects
is handling the sale of the movie.

Also attending the premiere reception were Toronto Fest topper Piers Handling
and Managing Director Mich