Quoted: the latest TIFF talk

We’ll update Quoted regularly before and during the festival. Check back often.

“Taking the Toronto Transit Commission’s whisper-quiet subways from one film festival screening to another earlier this week, a Chicagoan couldn’t help but notice that the sound levels are a major shock to the El-conditioned system. The civility is relentless in Toronto. The taxi drivers, whatever their ethnicity or whatever sort of day they’ve had, display a startling lack of aggression behind the wheel.”—critic Michael Phillips [Chicago Tribune]

“King and Queen Streets in Toronto are all by themselves reasons for the city to exist.”—Roger Ebert [Twitter]

“Do I look like Jake Gyllenhaal? If you want, I could tell you his workout regime. I had to hear about it for half an hour—half an hour I’ll never get back.”—Jay Baruchel [CBC]

“Toronto is America’s most important film festival, even though it takes place in Canada.”—Adam Dawtrey [Guardian]

“This city just gets more beautiful all the time.”—Uma Thurman [CTV]

“The reason I’m wearing this jacket is because I’m sweaty and I can’t take it off.”—Nicole Kidman at the Rabbit Hole press conference [Toronto Sun]

“Why would any kid want to come and see thousands cheer their parents? They’d rather see thousands boo their parents!”—Bruce Springsteen on the absence of his kids at his shows [Toronto Star]

“Everybody loves Jon [Hamm]. I was so attracted to him. I had to work with him because he’s so handsome.”—Ben Affleck [Toronto Star]

“TIFF’s wonderful new Bell Lightbox is one swell place to see a movie.”—Roger Ebert [Twitter]

“Each time we told Natalie [Portman] we had to push another three weeks, she’d say, ‘Another three weeks of eating carrot sticks and almonds? I am going to kill you.’”—Darren Aronofsky on filming Black Swan [Globe and Mail]

“The Toronto audience is the festival’s charm. It is smart, open-minded and eager to find the best in films that are seldom perfect but almost always have something to say.”—Michael Cieply [New York Times]

“It’s fucking great.”—Darren Aronofsky on Black Swan [Twitter]

"[Passion Play] is a movie that says, ‘You know what? I have the money to hire Mickey Rourke to play a washed-up saxophonist and Bill Murray to be a New Mexico gangster. I have the cash to have them fight over Megan Fox, who I’ll make an angel—not one of those Victoria’s Secret angels, but, like, one at a carnival freak show. What I don’t have the budget for are effects that make the wings seem real. I know they look like cartoons, but who cares?'"—critic Wesley Morris [Boston Globe]

“I’m a director. You have to do what I say.”—Paul Haggis at the Artists for Peace and Justice Party [The Hype]

“You just made me cry. You are like the Barbara Walters of ET Canada!”—Megan Fox to Rick Campanelli [National Post]

"Barney’s Version film very touching, great performances, shed tears...”—Margaret Atwood [Twitter]

“He looks so good. How old is he?”—a guest at the George Christy luncheon about Anthony Hopkins [The Hype]

“SUPER premiere was a fucking BLAST! I love you, Toronto.”—Rainn Wilson [Twitter]

“This party is so boring.”—guest at the Vanity Fair bash at The Thompson

“Canadians love piercings.”—Rainn Wilson [Twitter]

“We should go to a hip-hop club.”—Steve Nash at the CBC Hazelton Takeover party [The Hype]

“Sure, the glitz of Venice and the reclusive allure of Telluride set the stage, but Toronto is where the art-house armada gathers its fleet to prepare for the invasion of Yankee shores.”—John Lopez [Vanity Fair]

“I have celebrated my birthday here in Toronto for the last 10 years.”—Colin Firth [Hollywood Reporter]

“What do you do when Ben Affleck is in the urinal behind you? Wait and pee I guess? At least he didn’t have security in there.”—critic Mohit Rajhans [Twitter]

“We shouldn’t be making 250 feature films in this country. I don’t think it can sustain. Where are those films going? I mean, are they just home movie productions done on credit cards?"—TIFF co-director Piers Handling [Toronto Star]

“I still send out scripts and get back the response ‘too Canadian,’ though I’m not exactly sure what that means.”—Canadian producer Christine Haebler [Globe and Mail]

“I’m not trying to beat people over the head with a beaver pelt, but I think we live in one of the best countries in the world and if I can express that in a film I’m happy to do it.”—Score director Michael McGowan [Herald Sun]

“How fitting that the setting is Toronto—this thing plays like the Leafs.”—Rick Groen on Score: A Hockey Musical [Globe and Mail]

“I’d like to think I would have made this movie when I was 30 or 40 too, because it’s a good story. I don’t know. I was more of an actor who directed back then and now I’m more of a director who acts. Or occasionally acts. Or maybe never acts.”—Clint Eastwood on Hereafter [LA Times]

“Director Mike Dowse and the actors walk a line here between comedy that’s both cheerfully asinine and dark as bitumen. You can’t help feeling this is a movie Terry and Dean would love.”—critic Liam Lacey on Fubar II [Globe and Mail]

“Toronto is probably the most important date in the diary of UK film.”—anonymous producer [London Evening Standard]

“Last year TIFF didn’t open with a Canadian film and that was subject of much discussion. Secondly, Barney’s Version which would have been the opening film, couldn’t open because the opening is Rosh Hashanah... So our gentile hockey movie stole the spot.”—Score: A Hockey Musical star Noah Reid [BlogTO]

“Many were frankly embarrassed that Canada’s biggest and most prestigious film fete would kick off with a parochial ode to the national sport, featuring has-been pop singer Olivia Newton-John as a hockey mom.”—critic Martin Morrow [CBC]

“That’s a great compliment. I probably stole from both of them.”—Ben Affleck on comparisons of his film The Town to Martin Scorsese’s The Departed and Michael Mann’s  Heat [Ottawa Citizen]

“I’ve been dying to work with [Catherine Keener]. Catherine was my number one choice because I find her completely authentic on screen. She’s intelligent, strong, grounded with a huge heart. It was important to me that these parents came off as educated and well-informed. If it could happen to them, it could happen to anyone.”—Trust director David Schwimmer [Wall Street Journal]

“Historically, Toronto has been more of a festival than a market; we feel that in the last couple of years, it’s become more of a marketplace.”—IM Global CEO Stuart Ford [Hollywood Reporter]

“The funny thing about Cannes is it’s this big glitz and glamour, south-of-Francey thing and in the middle of that is this little nub of a serious art film festival.... so it’s very schizophrenic. But Toronto is much more serious business.”—Helen Mirren [CTV]

“If you see anybody around Bell Lightbox or Yonge-Dundas Square dressed in a Slovak folklore costume handing out MODRA postcards, that’s likely my mother or my aunt or cousin who are flying in from Slovakia for the world premiere.”—MODRA director Ingrid Veninger [CTV]

“I was eight and a half months pregnant, having contractions during an interview with Woody Harrelson and thinking, ‘Oh no, is it time?'"—Cheryl Hickey on last year’s fest [NOW]

“The truth is that the [Montreal] World Film Festival no longer exists on the world stage. … The World Film Festival is an excellent festival for Montreal... But we have to stop talking about the battle between Montreal and Toronto. That competition hasn’t existed for more than 10 years.”—director Denis Villeneuve [Montreal Gazette]

“I like this town you have here. It’s like Houston, or some other places I’ve been. It’s like this microchip gone crazy, with all different kinds of architecture everywhere.”—Julian Schnabel [Toronto Star]

“Hockey without fighting is like Kraft Dinner without cheese. It is still pasta, but the palette it won’t please.”—Lyrics from “Kraft Dinner,” one of the songs in Score: A Hockey Musical [Orangeville Banner]

“Well, I guess Yorkville is like the girlfriend or partner you’ve had for years and years, and you love her, and you always will, but now it’s just time to move on.”—TIFF co-director Cameron Bailey on the westward movement of the festival [Toronto Star]

“I’ve got to change it before I meet him this week!”—Filmmaker Xavier Dolan on the display photo of James Franco on his iPhone [Toronto Star]

“I was sure that one day someone would arrive like this. Someone who would kick the ass of everybody and would shake everybody. For me, it’s the best thing in a long time that happened to Quebec cinema and to me.”—Director Denis Villeneuve on Xavier Dolan [Toronto Star]

“The whole film feels like you’ve opened up a pop-up book and there’s this amazing display of martial arts, acrobatics and dance inside the pages. It’s like a cross between MMA and Cirque du Soleil!”—Colin Geddes on Bunraku, which stars Demi Moore and Josh Hartnett [Toronto Star]

“We’re the envy of every festival in the world because I think we have more stars than any festival in the world. At the same time, they suck up an immense amount of oxygen. So a lot of the attention goes to them, as opposed to the filmmakers who are here, as well as the international talent and a lot of the international films.”—TIFF CEO and co-director Piers Handling [Toronto Sun]

“I still miss Ivan Reitman’s dad’s car wash. It’s hard to find a good car wash downtown. But having it converted to a movie theatre was a good idea. These days, the trend is the other way around. Perhaps Lightbox could acknowledge Mr. Reitman with a celebrity car-washing fundraiser?”—Toronto filmmaker Ron Mann [Toronto Star]

“As a Torontonian, it’s particularly meaningful to me because I’ve been attending the festival for years and sneaking into various parties. So it’s nice to now have a legitimate reason to be there.”—Daydream Nation writer and director Mike Goldbach [Blog TO]


Sign up for This City, our free newsletter about everything that matters right now in Toronto politics, sports, business, culture, society and more.

By signing up, you agree to our terms of use and privacy policy.
You may unsubscribe at any time.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.


Big Stories

The Battle for Leslieville: Gentrification, opioids and murder in the city’s most divided neighbourhood
Deep Dives

The Battle for Leslieville: Gentrification, opioids and murder in the city’s most divided neighbourhood