Silver Linings Playbook wins Toronto Film Festival

The team of Silver Linings Playbook at the premiere

Today, David O’Russell’s comedy Silver Linings Playbook has been named the BlackBerry People’s Choice Award winner at the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF).

Starring Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence and Robert De Niro, the crowd-pleasing film centres on a bipolar former teacher who meets a troubled widow as he tries to reconcile with his wife, after his release from a mental hospital.

This is the second win this month for the producers of the film, The Weinstein brothers. Their other buzz-generating movie, The Master, won best director and best actors at Venice Film Festival last week.

Some TIFF winners, such as Chariots of Fire, American Beauty, Slumdog Millionaire and The King’s Speech, went on to dominate the coveted Oscars, so most likely we will be hearing more about Silver Linings Playbook in the upcoming awards season.

The BlackBerry People’s Choice Midnight Madness Award went to Martin McDonagh’s Seven Psychopaths. This award is reserved for films that were screened at the Festival’s Midnight screenings sidebar, such as horror movies.

Starring Colin Farrell, Sam Rockwell, Woody Harrelson, Christopher Walken and Abbie Cornish, the dark comedy follows a screenwriter who inadvertently gets entangled in a Los Angeles underworld crime.

Ben Affleck’s Argo fires up Canadians at TIFF

Argo, one of the most talked about movies at Toronto International Film Festival was premiered last night at the Roy Thompson Hall.

Ben Affleck in Argo

The political thriller is based on the true story of the 6 Americans who succeeded in fleeing the US embassy in Tehran when it was stormed by Iranian demonstrators, following the toppling of the Shah in 1979. The escapees took refuge in the Canadian ambassador’s home, until they were smuggled out of Iran by CIA operative Tony Mendes (played by Ben Affleck).

Ending with a thank you note to Canada for assisting in saving the 6 Americans, the film received a rapturous applause by the Canadian audience. The nail-biting, suspenseful film was also praised by critics and is predicted by many to dominate the upcoming awards season.

Before the screening, director Ben Affleck, accompanied by his wife, actress Jennifer Garner, walked down the red carpet followed by the rest of the cast, which includes Bryan Cranston, John Goodman, Kyle Chandler, Alan Arkin and Taylor Schilling.

Just as the Argo premiere after-party began in earnest a few blocks away in Terroni, another movie that created a lot of buzz, Paul Thomas Anderson’s The Master, was having its own premiere. It centres on an unsettled naval veteran (Joaquin Phoenix) who is manipulated by a cult leader (Philip Seymour Hoffman).

Later at midnight, Martin McDonagh’s Seven Psychopaths received its world premiere, which was attended by the director and his cast, including Colin Farrell, Woody Harrelson, Christopher Walken, Abbie Cornish, Olga Kurylenko and Sam Rockwell.