Film und Medien Stiftung NRWNewsPressFilmstiftung films in Toronto: „55 Steps“ and "In The Fade"

Filmstiftung films in Toronto: „55 Steps“ and "In The Fade"

  • Toronto International Film Festival have announced more productions, including five Filmstiftung-backed films
  • Gala Premiere: „55 Steps“ by Bille August, largely shot in NRW
  • Special Presentation: „In The Fade“ by Fatih Akin
  • Contemporary World Cinema: „Ana, mon amour“ by Călin Peter Netzer and „Arrhythmia“ by Boris Khlebnikov
  • Masters: „The Other Side of Hope“ by Aki Kaurismäki
  • 42nd Toronto International Film Festival: 7 to 17 September

The Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) has announced the programme for further sections, with five Filmstiftung-backed productions now being invited to Canada. „55 Steps“ by Bille August will be presented as a Gala Premiere. „In The Fade“ by Fatih Akin will be shown in the Special Presentations. „Ana, mon amour“ by Călin Peter Netzer and „Arrhythmia“ by Boris Khlebnikov can be seen in the Contemporary World Cinema sidebar. „The Other Side of Hope“ by Aki Kaurismäki – which received distribution support – will be shown in the Masters section. The programme for other festival sections will be announced in the coming days. The 42nd edition of North America’s most important film festival is being held from 7 to 17 September.

„Congratulations to the filmmakers and their producers on being invited to North America’s most important film festival! NRW is showing its flag on the international stage again with very different kinds of films: the world premiere of a star-studded studio production, a thriller which had already convinced in Cannes and garnered Diane Kruger the Best Actress award, as well three other strong international co-productions“, says Petra Müller, CEO of the Film- und Medienstiftung NRW. „We wish them lots of success and an enthusiastic audience at ‚tiff‘ in Toronto!“

About the films:

„55 Steps“ by Bille August (Gala)
„55 Steps“ is the true story of the special friendship between Eleonor Riese and Colette Hughes and their common fight for justice. Eleonor suffers from paranoid schizophrenia and is fighting for the right to have a say about her medication. Colette is Eleonor’s lawyer. Their fight for justice goes all the way up to the Supreme Court and, despite Eleanor’s difficult personality, a deep friendship develops between the two women that also changes Colette’s life. The drama is a production of Cologne’s elsani film in co-production with Potemkino Port, Belgien and MMC Movies Köln. Helena Bonham Carter (Eleonor), Hilary Swank (Colette), Jeffrey Tambor, Johan Heldenbergh and Cynthia Hoppenfeld appear in the leads. The Film- und Medienstiftung NRW backed the production with 800,000 Euros. Other funders of the German-Belgian production are the German Federal Film Fund (DFFF), Screen Flanders and the Belgian Tax Shelter.

„In The Fade“ („Aus dem Nichts“) by Fatih Akin (Special Presentation)
Fatih Akin’s film centres on a woman’s love for her family beyond the grave. Her life suddenly implodes when her husband and son die in a bomb attack. The police arrests two suspects: a young couple from the Neo-Nazi scene. The young woman wants justice – there isn’t any alternative for her. Diane Kruger, who was named Best Actress in Cannes for her performance, Dennis Moschitto and Ulrich Tukur are cast in the leads in Fatih Akin’s new film. „In The Fade“ is a production by bombero international in co-production with Warner Bros. Film Productions Germany, Macassar Productions, Pathé (both France) and corazón international. The Filmstiftung NRW backed the film with 250,000 Euros, other funding came from Filmförderung Hamburg Schleswig-Holstein, FFA, BKM and DFFF. The Match Factory is handling international sales. Warner will be releasing the film in German cinemas on 23 November

„Arrhythmia“ by Boris Khlebnikov (Contemporary World Cinema)
The funded drama is a production of Mars Media Entertainment and CTP Film Company (both Russia) in co-production with Don Films, Post Control (both Finland) and Cologne’s Color of May Filmproduktion. Boris Khlebnikov directs  Alexander Yatsenko and Irina Gorbacheva in the lead roles of the story about the paramedic Oleg whose greatest desire is to help his patients. However, Oleg sees himself confronted by a „reformed“ health system and a boss who is pedantic about implementing the new rules. Cold regulations are now more at the fore rather than the patient. The film tells the story of this young man who tries to do a good job even though many forces are at work against him. The Filmstiftung supported the production with 50,000 Euros.
„Ana, mon amour“ by Călin Peter Netzer (Contemporary World Cinema)
The Romanian-German-French co-production „Ana, mon Amour“ by Calin Peter Netzer is the story of extreme love. Ana and Toma decide to fight for their relationship in spite of Ana’s mental illness and the difficult circumstances of their family backgrounds, eventually driving them into co-dependency. The lead roles are taken by Diana Cavallioti and Mircea Postelnicu. The co-production by Parada Film (Romania), Cologne’s augenschein Filmproduktion und Sophie Dulac Productions (France) was supported by the Film- und Medienstiftung NRW, with additional funding coming from Eurimages and HBO Romania onboard as a broadcaster. The Cologne-based distributor Real Fiction Film will release „Ana, mon Amour“ in the German cinemas on 24 August, and international sales are being handled by Beta Cinema. The editor Dana Bunescu received the Silver Bear for an Outstanding Artistic Contribution at this year’s Berlinale.

„The Other Side of Hope“ by Aki Kaurismäki (Masters)
The Syrian refugee Khaled arrives in Helsinki after an odyssey during which he lost his sister. He applies for asylum, but the conditions in Aleppo are not really so bad according to the Finnish authorities. He is due to be deported and runs away from the hostel. He ends up in the courtyard of a restaurant that is now being run by the former shirt salesman seller Wikström. They come to blows. But Wikström then lets Khaled live in his former storehouse and work with him in the restaurant. The tragicomedy „The Other Side of Hope“ by Aki Kaurismäki, which won the Silver Bear for Best Director at the Berlinale,  was produced by Sputnik OY in co-production with OY Bufo AB (both Finland) and Cologne’s Pandora Film and in association with YLE (Finland) and ZDF/Arte. The leads are taken by Sherwan Haji, Sakari Kuosmanen and Ilkka Koivula. The Filmstiftung NRW backed the German distribution with 40,000 Euros. Pandora Film Verleih released the tragicomedy in German cinemas on 30 March, 2017.

Founded in 1976, the Toronto International Film Festival is one of the world’s most popular film festivals and is regarded as a barometer for the coming Oscar awards ceremony.

Further information about the festival