TIFF rings in 2024 with international New Releases & powerful, commemorative retrospectives

programming release

December 15, 2023

TIFF rings in 2024 with international New Releases & powerful, commemorative retrospectives

Celebrating the groundbreaking works of Ryuichi Sakamoto and posthumous sports series from TIFF Programmer Ravi Srinivasan

A still from Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence

Left to right: He Got Game (1998); Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence (1983); Four Daughters (2023)

TORONTO — TIFF Bell Lightbox will be abuzz once again to kick off 2024, highlighting retrospectives from TIFF Cinematheque, award-contending New Release titles, and Public Programming.

Alone in the Arena: Genre-Defining Sports Films presented by TIFF Cinematheque, captures the hustle culture and power of underdog stories of the sports film genre and was the final project from TIFF Programmer Ravi Srinivasan before his passing in January 2023. White Men Can’t Jump, He Got Game, and The Color of Money are among the nine selections chosen for this series, and will be introduced by Ravi’s peers and colleagues.

TIFF Cinematheque will also showcase the legendary career of the late Japanese composer Ryuichi Sakamoto (1952–2023) in a seven-film retrospective curated by Vicky Wong (Coordinator, Cinematheque). Thousand Knives: Scored by Ryuichi Sakamoto celebrates his life and work in film and the wide range of worlds built through his compositions. These films provide a small cross section of Sakamato’s innumerable film scores and serve as a way into his music for new audiences. Sakamoto was open and collaborative in his practice, and working in film offered him the opportunity to work with many directors, including Nagisa Ōshima, Bernardo Bertolucci, Jun Ichikawa, and Brian De Palma.

Official Selections making their theatrical debut at TIFF Bell Lightbox in 2024 include Ilker Çatak’s The Teachers’ Lounge, Germany’s entry for Best International Feature at the 2024 Academy Awards; Arabic-language documentary, Four Daughters, the co-winner of the Cannes Golden Eye award is directed by Kaouther Ben Haniam, Tunisia’s submission for Best International Feature at the 2024 Academy Awards; Felipe Gálvez Haberle’s western, The Settlers, Chile’s entry for Best International Feature at the 2024 Academy Awards; and representing Japan for the Best International Feature Oscar is Wim Wenders’ Tokyo-set Perfect Days. The German filmmaker’s 3D documentary, Anselm, is opening on December 22, and is a follow-up to his 2011 film Pina – the highest grossing theatrical film in TIFF’s history.

New Releases opening this month include Dan Levy’s directorial debut, Good Grief, on December 29, as well as the recently announced Cannes Grand Prix-winning film The Zone of Interest, directed by Jonathan Glazer, and the UK’s submission for Best International Feature at the Oscars, opening December 21; and Michael Mann’s Ferrari, opening December 25.

A pair of classic Canadian films will also be featured in January as part of TIFF Cinematheque’s focus on the Toronto New Wave class of filmmakers, including Allan Moyle’s New Waterford Girl (1999) and Atom Egoyan’s Exotica (1994), with Egoyan in attendance for a post-screening Q&A.

International Cinema Cafe, Silver Screenings, and Secret Movie Club return for 2024 editions from TIFF’s Public Programming arm.

Tickets for all Cinematheque and Public Programming titles will be on sale for TIFF Members starting at 10 am on Wednesday, December 20 and to the public on December 22. For tickets to New Releases, check tiff.net for availability and more information.


Thousand Knives: Scored by Ryuichi Sakamoto | tiff.net/sakamoto

Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence (d. Nagisa Ōshima) | January 5, 6:30pm // January 9, 6:30pm
In a brutally enforced POW camp based in Java in 1942, the cultural clashes between the Japanese overseers and their European prisoners threaten to boil over with the arrival of Major Jack Celliers (David Bowie).

Tokyo Melody: A Film About Ryuichi Sakamoto with Xenia Benivolski (d. Elizabeth Lennard) | January 6, 6:30pm
Rarely screened since its initial festival run and release on French television, the film follows Ryuichi Sakamoto in the studio for his solo album Illustrated Musical Encyclopedia and through the streets of Tokyo as he experiences sounds throughout the city.

Love Is the Devil: Study for a Portrait of Francis Bacon (d. John Maybury) | January 7, 4pm
Taking the oft-repeated myth of Bacon (Derek Jacobi) meeting his lover George Dyer (Daniel Craig) during a burglary as its starting point, the film dramatizes the relationship between the celebrated British artist and his muse from its tender beginnings to its tragic, alcohol-fuelled end.

The Last Emperor (d. Bernardo Bertolucci) | January 12, 6:30pm
Bertolucci’s sweeping historical drama, The Last Emperor, portrays the rise and fall of China’s final imperial ruler and the end of the Qing Dynasty.

Gohatto (d. Nagisa Ōshima) | January 13, 6:30pm // January 16, 6:30pm
Set a few years before the fall of the feudal Tokugawa shogunate (Japan’s military government during the Edo period), Ōshima’s final film depicts the violent effects of desire and jealousy amongst men in a tightly controlled and heavily disciplined environment.

Snake Eyes (d. Brian De Palma) | January 14, 6:30pm
This thriller follows Nicolas Cage as Rick Santoro, a corrupt cop in Atlantic City attending a heavyweight boxing match at a hotel-casino complex and sitting ringside with his childhood best friend, a US Navy Commander serving as security for the Secretary of Defense watching the fight in the row behind.

Tony Takitani (d. Jun Ichikawa) | January 30, 6:30pm
Based on the eponymous short story by Haruki Murakami, filmmaker Jun Ichikawa’s minimalist Tony Takitani is an elegy to loneliness and many other manifestations of human longing in modern consumer society.

Alone in the Arena: Genre-Defining Sports Films | tiff.net/sports

The Wrestler with Geoff Macnaughton (d. Darren Aronofsky) | January 11, 6:30pm
Mickey Rourke provides a performance of astonishing commitment, detail, and emotional impact as a professional wrestler long past his prime, now eking out a living making blood sport for cheap entertainment.

Rounders (d. John Dahl) | January 17, 6:30pm
Featuring a recorded introduction by Will Woods
An early buddy drama at the peak of Ed Norton and Matt Damon’s career — the latter doing a “hustlers” turn of his iconic character from Good Will HuntingRounders brings together an underdog story and provides a glimpse into the card-game underworld.

The Fan with Peter Kuplowsky (d. Tony Scott) | January 18, 6:30pm
A $40 million contract lands the San Francisco Giants celebrated center fielder Bobby Rayburn (Wesley Snipes), but also the intense scrutiny of baseball super fan Gil Renard (Robert De Niro), whose reverence for Rayburn ratchets towards sociopathic obsession with murderous ramifications.

White Men Can’t Jump with Adam Cook (d. Ron Shelton) | January 19, 6:30pm
Two hustlers meet on the sun-bleached courts of Venice Beach where a pickup game leads to an unlikely business partnership in this iconic ’90s basketball comedy.

When We Were Kings (d. Leon Gast) | January 20, 3pm
Known as the “Rumble in the Jungle,” the 1974 heavyweight boxing match between George Foreman and Muhammad Ali in Kinshasa, Zaire, is widely considered one of the most famous fights in history, with $10 million on the line (fronted by Zaire’s dictator Mobutu Sese Seko) and a reported billion people around the world tuned in to watch.

He Got Game with Nataleah Hunter-Young (d. Spike Lee) | January 20, 6:30pm
While serving a long sentence upstate in Attica, Jake Shuttlesworth (Denzel Washington) is made an offer he can’t refuse: a chance at early release if he can convince his estranged son, top-ranked high school basketball recruit Jesus Shuttlesworth (Ray Allen), to sign with the governor’s preferred college — “Big State.”

Any Given Sunday (d. Oliver Stone) | January 21, 2:30pm
Featuring a recorded intro by Kiva Reardon
Featuring an ensemble cast of Hollywood stars and cameos by the game’s greats, Oliver Stone’s football epic follows the beleaguered Miami Sharks, led by the equally beleaguered Coach D’Amato (Al Pacino). His nemesis isn’t on a rival team, but in his own team’s ambitious new owner and GM, Christina Pagniacci (Cameron Diaz). After the Sharks’ starting quarterback (Dennis Quaid) is injured, hopes for redemption fall on third-stringer Willie “Steamin” Beamen (Jamie Foxx).

The Color of Money with Steve Gravestock (d. Martin Scorsese) | January 21, 6:30pm
Martin Scorsese’s sequel to The Hustler picks up the story of pool shark Fast Eddie Felson (Paul Newman) decades after the events of Robert Rossen’s original film. Long retired, Felson plans a crash course in hustling for his new understudies Vincent (Tom Cruise) and his shrewd girlfriend Carmen (Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio).

TIFF Cinematheque Special Screenings | tiff.net/special

The Hustler (d. Robert Rossen) | January 13, 3pm
Considered one of the best sports movies of all time, The Hustler stars Paul Newman as Fast Eddie Felson, a pool hustler who travels to New York to compete with the pool great Minnesota Fats (Jackie Gleason).

New and Restored | tiff.net/newandrestored

The Long Farewell (d. Kira Muratova) | January 6, 3:30pm
Censored and suppressed by the Soviet Union for its subversive formal daring only to emerge 16 years later during perestroika, Kira Muratova’s The Long Farewell is a crushing, impressionistic portrait of a mother and son, and one of the Ukrainian filmmaker’s must-see masterpieces.

Black God, White Devil (d. Glauber Rocha) | January 7, 6:30pm
Glauber Rocha’s sophomore feature is a scorched-earth allegory about the blind followers of dead-end ideologies. Steeped in history, myth, religion, and politics, and suffused with the feverish intensity of the blistering desert, Black God, White Devil is one of the Cinema Novo movement’s most uncompromising statements on current social issues as well as the universal problem of mindless fanaticism.

TIFF Wavelengths Presents | tiff.net/wavelengths

Bearer of Light: The Films of Kenneth Anger | January 10, 6:30pm
Puce Moment // Fireworks // Eaux D'Artifice // Scorpio Rising // Inauguration of the Pleasure Dome
All films shown in 16/35mm

Kenneth Anger made films about queerness, Satanism, pop culture, and occult mythology. Although he produced over 30 films in his lifetime, many were lost or destroyed. To honour his legacy after his passing in May 2023, this homage includes five films from Anger’s iconic Magick Lantern Cycle, revealing him as a bearer of both light and darkness. Curated and presented by Jacob Crepeault.

See the North presented by MUBI | tiff.net/seethenorth

Exotica with Atom Egoyan | January 23, 6:30pm
Three decades on, Atom Egoyan’s hermetically sealed study of grief and alienation at a Toronto strip club feels more and more like a must-see classic.

MDFF Selects | tiff.net/mdff

Tótem | (d. Lila Avilés) | January 25, 7pm
Introduction by MDFF’s Kazik Radwanski
Mexico’s submission for Best International Feature at the Oscars, Tótem is a choral film about life. Seven-year-old Sol spends the day at her grandfather’s home, helping with the preparations for a surprise party for her dying father. Throughout the day, chaos slowly takes over, fracturing the family’s foundations.

TIFF Next Wave Presents | tiff.net/nwp

New Waterford Girl (d. Allan Moyle) with Canadian Film Trivia hosted by TIFF’s Next Wave Committee | January 31, 6:30pm
Some may call New Waterford quaint, but director Allan Moyle presents it as no better than a prison cell to 15-year-old Mooney Pottie, who yearns for Paris, Manhattan, and, above all, a life beyond the confines of her tiny conservative hometown.

TIFF Family Films | tiff.net/family

The Muppets Take Manhattan (d. Frank Oz) | January 14, 2pm
40th Anniversary Screening
The third Muppets feature finds the crew attempting to mount a show on Broadway, but, with no backers in sight, they are forced to take other jobs to support themselves.


Silver Screenings Presents: Maudie | January 19, 11am – FREE for seniors 65+
Preceding this screening of the 2016 Canadian feature film, Jennifer Withrow, the Deputy Chief Curator at the McMichael Canadian Art Collection joins TIFF to present an in-cinema lecture exploring the life and works of the film’s subject, Maud Lewis.

Each month, this free series brings seniors together to connect with fellow film lovers and participate in a variety of events, including peer-led film discussions, interactive workshops, and classes. Silver Screenings is supported by the Ontario Trillium Foundation and the New Horizons for Seniors Program.

International Cinema Cafe | January 14, 10:30am
Reel Talk is now International Cinema Cafe and continues to provide a snapshot of the best cinema from around the world, with a focus on films submitted for Best International Feature at the Academy Awards and hidden gems that may not see wide release.

Secret Movie Club | January 23, 7pm
Part of the fun is the surprise: titles are not announced ahead of time, and all screenings are previews of films not yet released in theatres. Each event offers a fun post-film discussion with a member of the film team — such as a director, screenwriter, producer, or actor — a critic, or a subject expert.


* Recently announced

*Opens December 21
The Zone of Interest
| Elevation
Jonathan Glazer won the Grand Prix at this year’s Cannes for this horror about Auschwitz commandant Rudolf Höss and his wife, who quite literally live amongst the ashes of their actions.

✅ Cannes Film Festival – Winner of 4 awards, including Palme d'Or and FIPRESCI Prize

*Opens December 25
| Elevation
Set in the summer of 1957, with Enzo Ferrari’s auto empire in crisis, the ex-racer–turned-entrepreneur pushes himself and his drivers to the edge as they launch into the Mille Miglia, a treacherous 1,000-mile race across Italy. Starring Adam Driver, Penélope Cruz, Shailene Woodley, Patrick Dempsey, Jack O’Connell, Gabriel Leone, and Sarah Gadon.

✅ Gotham Awards – Winner, Icon & Creator Tribute for Innovation

Opens December 29
Good Grief
| Netflix Studios
Marc (Dan Levy) was content living in the shadow of his larger-than-life husband, Oliver (Luke Evans). But when Oliver unexpectedly dies, Marc’s world shatters, sending him and his two best friends, Sophie (Ruth Negga) and Thomas (Himesh Patel), on a soul-searching trip to Paris that reveals some hard truths they each needed to face.

Opens January 19
The Teachers’ Lounge
| Mongrel Media
An idealistic high school teacher who advocates for a student accused of stealing becomes embroiled in conflict when she becomes the target of a theft herself. From director İlker Çatak and starring Eva Löbau, Leonie Benesch, and Leonard Stettnisch.

✅ TIFF 2023 – Official Selection, Centrepiece
✅ Berlin International Film Festival 2023 – Winner, Label Europa Cinemas Award and C.I.C.A.E. Panorama Award

*Opens January 19
| Elevation Pictures
Ava DuVernay directs an inspired adaptation of Isabel Wilkerson’s life, as she digs into the nuance of discrimination while writing what would become her New York Times bestselling book, Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents.

✅ TIFF 2023 – Official Selection, Gala Presentations
✅ Venice Film Festival 2023 – Nominee, Golden Lion Best Film

Opens January 26
Four Daughters
| Mongrel Media
Oscar-nominated Tunisian writer-director Kaouther Ben Hania (The Man Who Sold His Skin, Beauty and the Dogs) blends documentary and drama to explore the case of two missing sisters in Tunisia, and the family that mourns them.

✅ TIFF 2023 – Official Selection, Special Presentations
✅ Cannes Film Festival 2023 – Co-winner of the Golden Eye award for Best Documentary.

Opening February 2
The Settlers
| filmswelike
In his searing first feature, Chilean director Felipe Gálvez Haberle presents the painful experience of young mixed-race Segundo sent on a bloody mission to clear an expanse of land of Indigenous people for the powerful, relentless man who owns it.

✅ TIFF 2023 – Official Selection, Centrepiece
✅ Cannes Film Festival 2023 – FIPRESCI Prize Un Certain Regard

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TIFF 2024 takes place September 5–15, 2024.

About TIFF
TIFF is a not-for-profit cultural organization with a mission to transform the way people see the world through film. An international leader in film culture, TIFF projects include the annual Toronto International Film Festival®in September; TIFF Lightbox, which features five cinemas, learning and entertainment facilities; and the innovative national distribution program Film Circuit. The organization generates an annual economic impact of $200 million CAD. TIFF Lightbox is generously supported by contributors including the Province of Ontario, the Government of Canada, the City of Toronto, the Reitman family (Ivan Reitman, Agi Mandel, and Susan Michaels), The Daniels Corporation, and RBC. For more information, visit tiff.net.

TIFF is generously supported by Major Sponsors RBC and Visa, and Major Supporters: the Government of Canada, Government of Ontario, and City of Toronto.

TIFF Cinematheque is supported by Ontario Creates and Canada Council for the Arts.

Silver Screenings is supported by the Ontario Trillium Foundation and the Government of Canada.

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