A Hero

TORONTO — Rounding out the 2021 Toronto International Film Festival lineup are the audience-pleasing In Conversation With… series, and unique and inspiring Special Events. Packed with emotion and cultural significance, these events will offer audiences a wide range of experiences. Also announced today is TIFF’s Platform Prize Jury for 2021 and TIFF Industry Selects, a curated selection of 22 global films beyond the Official Selection that are available for sale at this year’s Festival.

“Each year TIFF’s Special Events and In Conversation With… sections come to life with unexpected surprises and moments,” said Joana Vicente and Cameron Bailey, Co-Heads, TIFF. “Audiences who attend these events are always left with a truly unforgettable memory.” 

Special Events – Part 2 Triumph: Rock & Roll Machine 

Triumph: Rock & Roll Machine

Before Drake and The Weeknd, there was a different set of Toronto musicians who ruled the roost. Known simply as Triumph, this rock trio dominated North American radio and mainstream charts in the late ’70s and early ’80s, and were the envy of the touring business — with even The Jacksons taking a page out of their 

live-show book. But despite being one of the world’s biggest rock bands, the trio split at the height of their fame and seemingly disappeared without explanation to their fans or media. Directed by Sam Dunn and Marc Ricciardelli, produced by the Emmy-winning Banger Films in association with Revolver Films and set to a mesmerizing visual backdrop of spandex, ’80s hair, and explosive pyro, Triumph: Rock & Roll Machine reveals a deeper story about fame and the human condition as the band reunites for what might be the very last time they play music together. 

Reflecting on 9/11: A day of recollection, 20 years later. 

The horrific news from New York City on that bright, late-summer morning 20 years ago tore open the bubble of the Toronto International Film Festival. Everyone was shaken, but, for the hundreds of Americans and New Yorkers in Toronto for the Festival that day, the shock went deeper. TIFF staff, led by then CEO Piers Handling and Executive Director Michèle Maheux, decided immediately to pause screenings, to shut down red carpets altogether, and to help people get home to their families. 

Memory Box: Echoes of 9/11

Two decades on, memory becomes more important. This year, we remember the filmmakers who have sought to tell the stories of 9/11 with insight and empathy. We remember the still-present threat of Islamophobia, including in film and television. This year, we mark the 20th anniversary of 9/11 with a day of recollection for our Festival community, including a special screening from Yard 44 and NBC News Studios, the new documentary Memory Box: Echoes of 9/11, by Bjørn Johnson and David Belton. This film explores the months following the worst terrorist attacks on the US, via recordings made in a simple video booth that captured the thoughts, feelings, and fears of more than five hundred Americans. Now, 20 years later, as the country and the world faces renewed uncertainty, Memory Box brings to the screen a collective, untold, and relevant story, presented by NBC News Studios, MSNBC Films and Peacock. 

Riz Ahmed

Platform Prize Jury – TIFF is also thrilled to announce the full international 2021 Platform Prize Jury. Led by Academy Award–nominated actor Riz Ahmed, the jurors include: Clio Barnard, Valerie Complex, Kazik Radwanski, and Anthony Chen. 

In Conversation With… This year’s In Conversation With… series connects audiences and film lovers around the world with some of the most talented artists working in film and television. The 2021 lineup includes award-winning actors and creators who have helped shape the discourse in the entertainment industry and who are presenting their highly-anticipated new films at the Festival. All In Conversation With… events are taking place digitally and will be accessible worldwide on the TIFF Bell Digital Talks platform. 

Kenneth Branagh – The Academy Award–nominated writer, director, and actor joins us to discuss his wide-ranging career in film, television, and theatre; the challenges and joys of adapting Shakespeare’s plays for the big screen; and the journey of making Belfast (2021), a Gala Presentation at this year’s Festival and his most personal film to date. Monday, September 13, 12pm EDT 

The Electrical Life of Louis WainThe TIFF Tribute 

Benedict Cumberbatch – Actor Award recipient and Academy Award nominee joins us to discuss his career in film, theatre, and television, and his two films at this year’s Festival: Jane Campion’s The Power of the Dog and Will Sharpe’s The Electrical Life of Louis Wain. Sunday, September 12, 3:30pm EDT 

Kristen Stewart

Kristen Stewart – To celebrate the fifth anniversary of TIFF’s ongoing Share Her Journey initiative in support of women in the film industry, we proudly present a conversation with the award-winning actor about her collaborations with the likes of Olivier Assayas and Kelly Reichardt, and her portrayal of Princess Diana in Pablo Larraín’s Spencer, a Special Event at this year’s Festival. Note: This live digital event is accessible to audiences worldwide on TIFF Bell Digital Talks for freas part of TIFF’s Share Her Journey initiative, empowering and celebrating women behind and in front of the camera. Audiences can pre-register for this exclusive event here. Wednesday, September 15, 12:30pm EDT 

Steven Yeun – The Academy Award–nominated actor joins us to retrace his extraordinary journey from collaborations with Bong Joon-ho, Lee Chang-dong, and Lee Isaac Chung to his upcoming film, Stephen Karam’s The Humans, a Special Presentation at this year’s Festival. Sunday, September 12, 6pm EDT 

The Humans

Additional Visionaries speaker added to the 2021 TIFF Industry Conference lineup: VISIONARIES Apichatpong Weerasethakul 

Generously supported by Anne-Marie Canning 

Born in Bangkok, director Apichatpong Weerasethakul is one of the most influential and revered visual artists of this time. His incisive, visceral relationship with the moving image often draws on the ancestral myths of his country to reflect on his surroundings, from global social issues to the political concerns of modern Thailand. Join us for a conversation with the filmmaker, whose latest feature, Memoria, was one of two Jury Prize winners at the 2021 Cannes Film Festival moderated by TIFF Artistic Director & Co-Head Cameron Bailey. 

TIFF 2021 Industry Selects – “These titles, hand-selected by TIFF’s Festival Programming team presented on our TIFF Digital Cinema Pro platform, are sure to garner interest from buyers,’’ said Diana Sanchez, Senior Director, Film. “They reflect the Festival’s global spirit and showcase a host of new voices and international talent.” 

“We’re delighted to present these director-driven and audience-engaging sales titles from around the world to international buyers who rely on our festival to help discover the best cinema from across the globe,” added Geoff Macnaughton, Senior Director, Industry and Theatrical. “TIFF is thrilled to support buyers, sales agents, producers, and of course filmmakers this year with the TIFF Industry Selects distinction.” 

  • 107 Mothers Peter Kerekes | Slovakia 
  • America Latina Damiano D’Innocenzo & Fabio D’Innocenzo | Italy, France 
  • Cadejo Blanco Justin Lerner | Guatemala, USA, Mexico 
  • Carmen Valerie Buhagiar | Malta, Canada 
  • Cool Abdoul Jonas Backeland | Belgium 
  • Domingo Raúl López Echeverría | Mexico, Austria, France The Hole in the Fence Joaquín del Paso | Mexico, Poland The King of All the World Carlos Saura | Mexico, Spain La Civil Teodora Ana Mihai | Belgium, Romania, Mexico The Last Mark Reem Morsi | Canada 
  • My Night Antoinette Boulat | France Night Blooms Stephanie Joline | Canada Nightride Stephen Fingleton | UK 
  • Nr. 10 Alex van Warmerdam | Netherlands, Belgium 
  • Old Henry Potsy Ponciroli | USA 
  • Onoda – 10,000 Nights in the Jungle Arthur Harari | France, Japan, Germany, Belgium, Italy 
  • The Pink Cloud luli Gerbase | Brazil 
  • Quake Tinna Hrafnsdóttir | Iceland 
  • Reflection Valentyn Vasyanovych | Ukraine 
  • The Score Malachi Smythe | UK 
  • Shankar’s Fairies Irfana Majumdar | India 
  • A Tale of Love and Desire Leyla Bouzid | France 

The Forgiven

Additionally, digital Public screenings will be programmed on digital TIFF Bell Lightbox for the accessibility of Festival-goers but are limited to Canadian audiences. The TIFF Digital Cinema Pro platform will host digital Press & Industry screenings, as well as the TIFF Industry Selects market for industry buyers. Films available to press and industry on TIFF Digital Cinema Pro will be accessible to delegates worldwide; however, some exceptions may occur where the film rights holders have not authorized an online screening in selected regions. The TIFF Bell Digital Talks platform will host a variety of Public and Press & Industry talks, including the In Conversation With… talks series, the Industry Conference, and Press Conferences. 

The Guilty

TIFF continues to work closely with the Province of Ontario, the City of Toronto, and public health officials on the safe execution of the Festival, with its number-one priority being the health and well-being of both Festival filmgoers and residents of the community. To help ensure the safest possible experience, TIFF has once again partnered with Medcan, a global health care leader providing medical expertise, consultation, and health inspiration to achieve its mission to help people “Live Well, For Life.” Based on the pillars of evidence-based care, exceptional client service, and the latest in technology, Medcan’s team of over 90 physicians supports employee health care across the continuum of health, including its “Safe at Work System,” which helps organizations navigate the pandemic. 

The 46th Toronto International Film Festival runs September 9–18, 2021. TIFF prefers Visa. 

About TIFF 

TIFF – Toronto International Film Festival

TIFF is a not-for-profit cultural organization whose mission is to transform the way people see the world through film. An international leader in film culture, TIFF projects include the annual Toronto International Film Festival in September; TIFF Bell Lightbox, which features five cinemas, learning and entertainment facilities; and innovative 

national distribution program Film Circuit. The organization generates an annual economic impact of $200 million CAD. TIFF Bell Lightbox is generously supported by contributors including Founding Sponsor Bell, the Province of Ontario, the Government of Canada, the City of Toronto, the Reitman family (Ivan Reitman, Agi Mandel and Susan Michaels), The Daniels Corporation and RBC. For more information, visit tiff.net.