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TIFF: Sports Drama ‘Borg/McEnroe’ Set to Open 2017 Festival

The film, which chronicles one of sports' greatest rivalries, stars Shia LaBeouf and Sverrir Gudnason.


Niels Thastum

This year’s Toronto International Film Festival will open with Janus Metz’s fact-based “Borg/McEnroe,” starring Shia LaBeouf and Sverrir Gudnason as the eponymous tennis players at the heart of its story, which chronicles one of sports’ greatest rivalries.

The film will kick off the festival on Thursday, September 7, with a world premiere at Toronto’s own Roy Thomson Hall. The festival will close out with Olivier Nakache and Eric Toledo’s “C’est la vie!,” and the Special Presentations section will open with Greta Gerwig’s directorial debut, “Lady Bird,” and close with Amr Salama’s “Sheikh Jackson.”

“‘Borg/McEnroe’ has a powerful tension about it that is on par with the electric energy of Toronto on opening night,” Piers Handling, director and CEO of TIFF, said in a statement.

In an interview with Variety in October, LaBeouf said, “[McEnroe and I have] everything in common. Passionate. Perfectionist. Narcissistic. I’m a bit of a caricature also. You look for parallels in your life, and I’m lucky because there is a lot here…I got nothing but love and respect for him. The script is brilliant. We are all here because of that. I cried the first time I read it. It’s not based on a book or a biography. It’s based on hard work.”

“Borg/McEnroe” opens in theaters in Sweden on September 15. Neon will release the film in North America in 2018. You can watch the trailer for “Borg/McEnroe” below.

The Toronto International Film Festival runs September 7 – 17 in Toronto, Canada.

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