Left to right: Colin Farrell on the red carpet, Oprah Winfrey greeting fans, unidentified running clock man.
Read fast -- we've got 48 hours of the Toronto International Film Festival to recap and you've only got 60 seconds!
Celeb Sightings. Viggo Mortensen decisively declared that he is not "quitting acting," he just doesn't have any films lined up for now. (He's next acting in a play in Spain.) He stars in the long-awaited The Road. Matt Damon called journalists "motherf******"" and "lazy," because of false reports last week that he'd died during a mountain hike in California. He is Steven Soderbergh's The Informant! (see below).
Colin Farrell reportedly grabbed a photographer by the back of the neck, to defend the honor of his sister on the red carpet; he's in Toronto for Triage. Oprah Winfrey attended in support of Precious, Lee Daniels' Sundance hit drama that opens soon, and spoke about her personal connection to the film.
Our Coverage. In A Serious Man, Joel and Ethan Coen have delivered a film that "speaks as much with its structure as it does with its dialog," says Monika Bartyzel, yet also manages to be "wildly funny." With The Informant!, starring Matt Damon and directed by Steven Soderbergh, you can expect "a seriously entertaining film ... about a seriously plain man," according to Scott Weinberg. Clive Owen shows a "familial heart underneath the macho exterior" in The Boys Are Back, Monika observes. Terry Gilliam's The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus features Heath Ledger's final performance, but, more to the point, "feels sort of like a favorite uncle just burst through the door, smiling and loaded with nifty presents," Scott writes, after confessing his unabashed love for Terry Gilliam.
A special moment with George Clooney, and more Internet confesions - after the jump!
Blog Talk. George Clooney was the man of the hour over the weekend, yet still found time to talk movies and not just business. "Every now and then ... you end up reconnecting with someone, recognizing in them a love of film as powerful as your own," writes Drew McWeeny at HitFix, "and for that ten or fifteen or twenty minutes, that film is a special language the two of you share, and it doesn't matter that he's a giant movie star or that you're an entertainment writer and critic." Drew's article offers insight into the nature of celebrity at a huge, important festival like Toronto, and is a wonderful read.
Toronto, though, is not just about the stars, the award-chasers and the dealmakers. "It's All About Waves," per the description at the Filmmaker Magazine Blog, as Scott Macauley comes to grips with the first Wavelengths avant-garde program at the fest this year and talks with programmer Andrea Picard, as well as 79-year-old experimental film pioneer Michael Snow.
Our friends at indieWIRE have posted a flock of reviews, most by Eric Kohn; my favorite pullquote so far is from his review of Harmony Korine's Trash Humpers: "Garbage sex is just one aspect of their collective perversions."
After noting the theft of $12,000 --- and a script -- from a hotel lobby in Toronto, Peter Bowen at Films in Focus talks about the peculiar effect of "real crime" at a film festival, and how it may have affected his viewing of a wide range of films: " It's a shame when reality decides to crash the party. For myself, it changes my perspective just a bit."
Karina Longworth "didn't wake up this morning expecting to see two one-note comedies about the odd symbiotic relationship between wealth accumulation, fabrication and faith." She details the experience of watching Michael Moore's Capitalism: A Love Story and Ricky Gervais' The Invention of Lying at Spout.
Glenn Kenny is not actually in Toronto, but he did see Jennifer's Body, and he did describe Megan Fox as "a black hole of pout, gloss, and sway."
Deals. Limited to just one, apparently, over the weekend. Jan Hrebejk's Shameless has been picked up by Menemsha Films for distribution in North America, indieWIRE reports. In the film, a popular TV weather forecaster "suddenly wakes up to an altered sense of identity." Shameless is due in theaters in February 2010.
More than 140 films were available for sale at the beginning of the fest, according to a rather staggering list compiled by indieWIRE. Most are still up for grabs.