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New TIFF Photos: Keanu Reeves’ ‘Man of Tai Chi,’ Stephen Frears’ ‘Philomena’ & ‘Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom’

New TIFF Photos: Keanu Reeves' 'Man of Tai Chi,' Stephen Frears' 'Philomena' & 'Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom'

It’s been over 10 years since Keanu Reeves was kung-fu fighting and fast as lightning in the “The Matrix Revolutions” (makes you wish they woulda quit after the first film), but while Reeves has been taking it kind of easy ever since (probably the two biggest films he’s starred in since then have been the utterly forgettable “Constantine,” and “The Day The Earth Stood Still“). But Keanu seems to be slowly coming out of his hiatus. His big-budget samurai/kung-fu spectacle, “Ronin 47,” is finally scheduled for a December release after almost two years of delays (see the trailer here) and he also has a directorial debut on the way. Scheduled to debut at the Toronto International Film Festival, we’ve already seen an international trailer and a few photos from Reeves debut, “The Man From Tai Chi,” and now courtesy of TIFF we have a few more.

The log-line is particularly short, but Yuen Woo-ping’s participation is exciting and something to look forward to.

A young martial artist’s unparalleled Tai Chi skills land him in a highly lucrative underworld fight club. Starring Keanu Reeves and Tiger ChenKeanu Reeves makes his directorial debut with this spectacular, bone-crunching martial-arts epic starring former Matrix stuntman Tiger Chen and featuring fight choreography by the legendary Yuen Woo-ping (martial arts choreographer on “The Matrix“)

Next up from TIFF is a first look from Stephen Frears’ “Philomena” a drama starring Judi Dench and Steve Coogan.

Based on the 2009 investigative book by BBC correspondent Martin Sixsmith, The Lost Child of Philomena Lee, this film focuses on the efforts of Philomena Lee (Judi Dench), mother to a boy conceived out of wedlock — something Philomena’s Irish-Catholic community didn’t have the highest opinion of — and given away for adoption in the United States. Following church doctrine, she was forced to sign a contract that wouldn’t allow for any sort of inquiry into her son’s whereabouts. After starting a family years later in England and, for the most part, moving on with her life, Philomena meets Sixsmith (Steve Coogan), a BBC reporter with whom she decides to track down her long-lost son.

And then lastly a new photo from The Weinstein Company‘s “Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom” starring Idris Elba and co-starring Naomie Harris, Tony Kgoroge, Riaad Moosa and Lindiwe Matshikiza. Due November 29, in limited release, it’s the only one of these three films that has a 2013 release date so far. Presumably it’ll be doing its best to chase Oscar as well.

Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom is based on South African President Nelson Mandela’s autobiography of the same name, which chronicles his early life, coming of age, education, and 27 years in prison before working to rebuild his country’s once-segregated society. Starring Idris Elba as Nelson Mandela, and Naomie Harris as Winnie Mandela.
TIFF 2013 is already stacked to the gills, but more films will be announced in the coming weeks.

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