Canadian director Atom Egoyan is bringing his latest movie, Seven Veilsto the Toronto Film Festival for a world premiere, with Amanda Seyfried in the lead role as a tortured opera director.
Seyfried reteamed with her Chloe director Egoyan for the opera-themed drama where she plays Jeanine, a theater director remounting her former mentor’s most famous work, an adaptation of the opera Salome from composer Richard Strauss, based on the play by Oscar Wilde. As Jeanine reenters the opera world after years away, she is haunted by dark and disturbing memories from her past as her repressed trauma colors the present.
Rebecca Liddiard, Douglas Smith, Mark O’Brien and Vinessa Antoine also star Seven Veils, which was shot in and around Toronto earlier this year. Should the ongoing strikes by the WGA and SAG-AFTRA continue into the fall, American actors will be barred from publicizing any big-ticket studio movies at marquee festivals like Venice and Toronto.
Seven Veils as a Canadian-financed indie will test TIFF’s ability to produce buzzy premieres this year. The indie film was shot under the jurisdiction of ACTRA, the Canadian actors union with longstanding ties to SAG-AFTRA. That will allow Egoyan to lead his cast up the red carpet in Toronto and connect with fest-goers amid an expected limited US film presence.
Egoyan’s drama will debut on Sept. 10 as part of the Special Presentations sidebar, and marks the Canadian director’s 18th film to debut in Toronto.
A main selling point for booking Canadian films in high-profile gala or special presentations slots is, like Seven Veils, they often cast Hollywood names in key roles to secure US and other international sales. That will help TIFF generate star power in September, should the Hollywood labor actions persist.
Seyfried starred alongside Liam Neeson and Julianne Moore in Egoyan’s 2009 thriller Chloe, which bowed in Toronto. “We are honored to premiere Atom Egoyan’s extraordinary film at this year’s festival. Egoyan’s cinematic works are unmatched, and we’re excited to bring Seven Veils to our TIFF audiences and to the city of Toronto, his home,” Cameron Bailey, CEO of the Toronto festival, said in a statement.
Egoyan wrote the script for Seven Veils, while also producing alongside longtime collaborators Niv Fichman, Simone Urdl, Fraser Ash and Kevin Krikst. XYZ Film’s Aram Tertzakian, Nate Bolotin, Maxime Cottray and Nick Spicer will executive produce, alongside John Sloss of Cinetic Media, and Noah Segal and Adrian Love of Elevation Pictures.
The Film is produced by Rhombus Media and Ego Film Arts. XYZ Films is handling world sales, while Elevation Pictures will release the indie in Canada.
The Toronto Film Festival is set to run from Sept. 7 to 17, with additional lineup announcements to come in the upcoming weeks.
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