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Popcorn & Prejudice: A Movie Blog

Seattle Times writer Moira Macdonald muses on moviegoing. Email Moira: mmacdonald@seattletimes.com.

September 12, 2014 at 10:23 AM

As TIFF winds down, deals for ‘Still Alice’ and more

The Toronto International Film Festival wraps tomorrow, and no doubt many of its guests have already left town — but the dealmaking continues. Here are a few more titles acquired for distribution during the festival; most of them will likely come to Seattle next year.

— “Still Alice,” based on the novel by Lisa Genova and starring Julianne Moore as a woman facing early-onset Alzheimer’s disease, was acquired by Sony Classics, which plans to release the film in time for the awards season. (This puts Moore, in a year with few Best Actress-worthy roles, quite possibly in prime position to win her first Oscar.)

— “The Cobbler,” the latest film from Thomas McCarthy (I loved his previous films “The Station Agent,” “The Visitor,” and “Win Win”), was picked up by Image Entertainment for release next year. It stars Adam Sandler (who was in two TIFF films, also “Men, Women and Children”) and is the magical-sounding tale of a cobbler who enters people’s lives as he fixes their shoes.

– The bank-robbery tale “American Heist,” starring Hayden Christensen and Adrien Brody, was bought by Saban Films.

— “Pawn Sacrifice,” which depicts the 1972 chess match between Bobby Fischer and Boris Spassky and stars Tobey Maguire and Liev Schreiber, was picked up by new distributor Bleecker Street.

The biggest buy of the festival is surely Chris Rock’s comedy”Top Five” (subject of a breathlessly reported bidding war before going to Paramount). Among other films picked up during TIFF: the musical “The Last Five Years,” Chris Evans’ directorial debut “Before We Go,” the Beach Boys biopic “Love & Mercy” (with Paul Dano and John Cusack playing Brian Wilson at different ages), the John Travolta-starring art heist film “The Forger,” Lone Scherfig’s Oxford University-set drama “The Riot Club,” and more. A busy festival, and a busy week. Here’s to a restful weekend.

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