In part 1 of our 3-part blog series we took a closer look at two of the very best film festivals, notably, The Cannes Film Festival and Sundance Film Festival. Sundance is on our list because of the way that it showcases some of the future Oscar winners and features a mix of talent that not many festivals can compete with. Cannes, likewise is one of the best, partly due to its long-standing in the industry and also, it’s exclusivity. Now we are at part 2 we will feature more of the best film festivals around the world.
Toronto International Film Festival
Regarded as second only to Cannes in terms of star-power, the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) sees a whopping 400,000 people attending every year. Toronto has built up a reputation as one of the leading festivals and has produced a significant number of Oscar winners in its time. The publicly attended event has been going strong since its inception in 1976. Variety Magazine acknowledged that the TIFF is second only to Cannes in terms of the high-profile of movies, stars and the marketing of the festival. It is described by itself as a charitable, cultural organization with a mission to transform the way people see the world through the medium of film. As you might expect there have been some notably movie premieres over the years, including the likes of:
- Slumdog Millionaire
- American Beauty
- 127 Hours
Who could possibly forget that Slumdog Millionaire went on to scoop no fewer than 8 Oscars at the 2009 Academy Awards and has grossed over $400 Million Dollars from a budget of just $15 Million Dollars. Movie makers all vie for the People’s Choice Award, which unlike its Cannes counterpart isn’t a juried result. The film with the highest ratings as voted for by the TIFF going populace gets the coveted prize.
The Berlin International Film Festival
If you thought the crowds that the TIFF gets every year were large, then think again! The Berlin International Film Festival manages to eclipse Toronto for sheer scale, with over half a Million visitors each year. This figure includes film professionals from over 130 countries around the globe, such is the pulling power of the German festival. Spread over 6 days, the event features workshops, panels and discussion groups from some of the best cinematographers on the planet! The Berlinale as it is also known has been a firm favourite since its inception back in 1951 with up to 400 different films shown across the many classes.
Nowadays the Berlinale is held every February and sells over 300,000 tickets each year, with over 500,000 admissions in total. This makes it the largest publicly attended festival in the world. Of the 400 or so films that are presented, only 20 get to compete for the major prizes. It is these Silver and Golden Bears that the moviemakers hold in such high esteem. Over the years the event has been graced by some of the most auspicious names in the movie business, with many giving presentations to the awe-inspired public. These include:
- Ridley Scott
- Dennis Hopper
- Park Chan-Wook
- Charlotte Rampling
As I am sure you will agree, without question both the Berlin International Film Festival and the Toronto International Film Festival are worthy of part 2 of our series.Stay tuned for the 3rd and final in the series next time.