Well, it had to happen at least once during the week. Despite my best efforts to get on line at least 30 minutes early and even hopping in a cab to guarantee it, I did not make the cut for those getting into D.O.A.P. (DEATH OF A PRESIDENT). Since the Cumberland 3 seats 319 and the volunteer with the clicker said I was right at #300, I was optimistic that I’d get to see one of the real “buzz” titles at the festival and the film that had Fox News’ panties in a twist. But of course that’s before all the line jumpers squeezed in with their buddies and co-workers and ruined it for the rest of us. There’s a little thing called karma you know… Anyway, word has it that this controversial British mock doc about the US administration after Bush gets assasinated is pretty darn good–cleverly constructed with a seamless mix of archival and fictional “news.” But at least Newmarket picked it up (they’ve been quiet since THE CHUMSCRUBBER last year and the whole Picturehouse thing, haven’t they?), so hopefully we’ll all have an opportunity to judge for ourselves in the near future. And though many Press and Industry screenings were insanely crowded this year (Monday in particular was nuts!), I somehow managed to only strike out this one time.
What happened to the “People’s Choice ” award this year? Ever since I can remember, Toronto has used this system to determine their Audience Award winner. But as we headed to the airport for the flight home, I realized I had forgotten to vote this year (BABEL would have been my selection), and just as quickly realized that there had been no ballot boxes at the theaters anyway, nor had there been the usual trailer hyping the award and telling people to vote. What’s up with that?
I did get a kick strolling home very late one night down Yonge Street. Though I must have walked by it dozens of times, I found myself reading the digital ticker/marquee on the outside of The Brass Rail, a huge strip club taking up a good size chunk of the city block. Not only did they “Welcome Film Festival Fans,” but I liked their attitude when they personally guaranteed “Very Satisfying Lap Dances.” If you disagree do they give you your money back? We’ll never know.