British director Steve McQueen’s 12 Years a Slave has won the 38th Toronto Film Festival’s audience prize. Produced by Brad Pitt and Starring Chiwetel Ejiofor and Michael Fassbender, the film tells the real-life story of an African-American who was subjected to the cruelty of slavery for 12 years before he was freed by his white friends in 19th century America. This triumph will propel 12 Years a Slave ahead in the Oscar race.
Another British movie, Stephen Frears’ Philomena was the first runner-up, followed by Denis Villeneuve’s Prisoners.
Egyption Jehane Noujaim’s The Square won the documentary audience award. The film follows the Egyptian revolution from the toppling of Hosni Mubarak in 2011 to the deposing the first democratically elected president Mohamed Mursi.
The last six years, Toronto Film Festival (TIFF) has screened all the Oscar Best Picture winners. Last year’s runner-up, Argo, won the Oscar for the best picture. Other TIFF winners such as Slumdog Millionaire and The King’s Speech ended up taking home the Oscars for best picture.