The Bell Lightbox is Illuminated

As most film festival fans know by this point, the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) is well underway, and Sunday marked the opening and public unveiling of the new Bell Lightbox – a multi-purpose building that will function as a movie theatre (there are five theatres, with different seating capacities), a learning centre, film resource centre, and headquarters for the TIFF group.

I’ll have more thoughts on the building, its’ post-TIFF activities, and such, but for now the focus is on the aims of its stewards, and its’ unveiling this past Sunday. Naturally, I had a commitment I was snookered into maintaining, so in place of the photos and material I would’ve taken & written, here are some selected images and thoughts.

Those wanting a more personable background on the building’s development pre-unveiling Sept. 12th should read this lengthy piece at The Walrus.

The opening of the Bell Lightbox was covered in Torontoist (with pictures), and the street party / concert with K’naan was highlighted at BlogTO. The Star’s coverage was tepid but they also offer a link to a video montage by the Canadian Press.

I’ve heard nothing but rave reviews of the new theatres – particularly the 500-seat theatre which can exhibit everything (70mm, digital, 3D, and movies with live musical accompaniment) – so I’m very keen on checking out the theatrical roster when TIFF launches its Essential Cinema series September 23.

Film music fans should take note of the series, which will include Caligari in Concert (live score performance headed by Andrew Downing), DJ Spooky’s Rebirth of a Nation, Greed with Do Make Say Think, Metropolis with a new score for the uncut version by Gabriel Thibaudeau, Man with a Movie Camera scored by the Michael Nyman Band, The Passion of Joan of Arc and Richard Einhorn’s Voices of Light, and Sherlock Jr. with the Fern Lindzon Sextet.

Further details and scheduling info can be found at TIFF’s In Concert section.

And since we’re on the subject of classic movies given a new spin with contemporary scores, I’ll have an interview next week with Brandon Hocura, who band VOWLS performed an original score to Kenji Mizoguchi’s The Water Magician (1933) this past summer at the Shinsedai Cinema Festival.

Mark R. Hasan, Editor


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