23rd Toronto International Film Festival Coverage

Daily Coverage

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Bistro 990, where the stars like to dine.

The 23rd Toronto International Film Festival ran from September 10th to the 19th, 1998 and Digital Hit Entertainment was there to cover it. Each day we sat through press screenings and press conferences and then headed out to cover the galas and premiere screenings.

The Toronto International Film Festival is highly regarded. Sure, it’s an industry festival, with wheeling and dealing going on in hotel hallways and beer tents. Contracts are signed and careers expanded. But it’s also a people’s festival, where tens of thousands of moviegoers get a chance to see films from around the world months before their actual release. It’s the excitement and word of mouth which can help a film’s box office and invigorate its creators.

The Four Seasons Hotel. Even stars have to sleep sometime.

This year’s Festival was a star-studded one. Celebrities who attended included Tom Cruise (producer of Without Limits), Meryl Streep (Dancing at Lughnasa), Gene Hackman, Cameron Diaz, Christian Slater, Michael Caine, Danny Glover, Gil Bellows, Elizabeth Hurley, Helena Bonham Carter, Holly Hunter, Neve Campbell, Drew Barrymore, Melanie Griffith, Kris Kristofferson, and Billy Bob Thornton (A Simple Plan).

Okay, our fingers are really sore, but here’s the complete list of films that were shown at the festival.

As we all know, the world runs on numbers. So let's compare this year's Festival to the '97 model:

  • 311 films (281 in 1997)
  • 1342 international submissions (1163 in 1997)
  • 53 countries (58 in 1997)
  • 244 features (233 in 1997)
  • 67 shorts (49 in 1997)
  • 26 Canadian Features (Not including CFC at Ten) (21 in 1997)
  • 42 Canadian Shorts (Not including CFC at Ten) (31 in 1997)
  • 83 First feature-length films (47 in 1997)
  • 19 screens (16 in 1997)
  • 12 programmes (12 in 1997) + 1 Retrospective (Canadian Film Centre At Ten)
  • 25,663 minutes of film (24,437 in 1997)
  • 144 international features making their world or North American Premieres (130 in 1997)
  • 10 Canadian feature films making their world premieres (11 in 1997)
  • 358 minutes for the longest film Fragments*Jerusalem
  • 1 minute for the shortest film Great Expectations (Not What you're Thinking)
  • Youngest Filmmaker: Samira Makhmalbaf - 17 (The Apple)
  • Oldest Filmmaker: Manoel de Oliveira - 89 (Inquiétude)