Toronto Sets Talks With Halle Berry, Claire Denis & Barry Jenkins; Adds David Oyelowo, Matthew Heineman Films

By Tom Grater

The 2020 Toronto International Film festival has unveiled its line-up of In Conversation With… events for this year.

The six talks are: Halle Berry, who will discuss her new feature Bruised; Claire Denis and Barry Jenkins, speaking together about their careers, Ava DuVernay, who will discuss art, activism and Black Lives Matter; Saoirse Ronan, discussing her performances that have seen her score four Oscar nominations at the age of just 26; Barry Levinson discussing the art of directing with Denzel Washington; and D-Nice and Anthony Mandler, who will cover the power of music and film.

The events will be presented on TIFF’s platform Bell Digital Talks.

Elsewhere, the festival has also revealed five titles that will screen as Special Events in the Official Selection: David Oyelowo’s The Water Man, in which he also stars; Matthew Heineman’s latest doc The Boy From Medellín; Stacey Lee’s documentary Underplayed; Michael Dweck and Gregory Kershaw’s The Truffle Hunters; and Tomm Moore and Ross Stewart’s animation Wolfwalkers.

The fest has also selected four titles for its Planet Africa 25 showcase: Charles Officer’s Akilla’s Escape; Dieudo Hamadi’s Downstream To Kinshasa; Tommy Oliver’s 40 Years A Prisoner; and Dawn Porter’s The Way I See It. The program will also feature a panel with Cameron Bailey and the team looking at building Planet Africa and what the program’s legacy means today.

“Planet Africa stands as one of the proudest moments in my career,” said Bailey. “Twenty-five years ago, I joined with colleagues and friends to launch a Festival platform for films from all over the African diaspora. We brought filmmaking legends together with new talent. We hosted a Planet Africa party that got both Hollywood stars and everyday Black people on the dance floor. We made our dreams for Black creativity real. I hope celebrating that work now can help inspire the next generation.”

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