(March 27, 2014 – Toronto, Ontario) It`s a combination of the holidays and the weather that causes a slow start to the Canadian film festival season. But once the weather warms up… let me rephrase that, regardless of the weather, come March and April, film festivals start sprouting like spring flowers are suppose to, in normal years that is. There are less than 5 film festivals in Canada in January. February brings more including one in Whitehorse where this year it was probably warmer than it was in Toronto. But with March and April the season is well underway including one of the the two biggest festivals in the country, Hot Docs.
As March draws to a close, things in Toronto and in the immediate area around Canada`s largest city, get positively hot. In a city that boasts some 80 or more film festivals a year, 10 take place between the end of February and the end of March. With just a few days left in the month, the Breast Film Festival starts tomorrow and runs until the 30th. If you’re of a certain bent then I feel compelled to point out that the Breast Fest is subtitled “a rethink breast cancer event.”
Also opening tomorrow and running until April 6 is Cinéfranco. Toronto is often called a city of neighbourhoods, but it is also a city of many different cultural influences with a significant French speaking population. This festival, now in its 17th year, features films from France, Morocco, Belgium, Switzerland and of course Canada. Often there are coproductions with two or three of this countries involved. Twenty-four distributors have pulled out all the stops to provide the best in French cinema and some of it is spectacular.
On Monday, March 31st, look for Catherine Deneuve to grace the screen in Elle s’en ya. This is the film`s English Canada premiere but it screened in Berlin last year as well as at the BFI London Film Festival. Deneuve plays Bettie, an attractive, sexy 60-something, who sees her life spinning out of control with her failing restaurant and love relationship. One Sunday in the middle of a busy lunch shift, she steps out for a short break, gets in her car and drives away