Aug 6, 2007

Toronto Film Fest 2007: Taymor's Across the Universe and Allen's Cassandra's Dreams

Titles from two of cinema's most unique and inspiring filmmakers join the lineup for the 2007 Toronto International Film Festival. Julie Taymor's ACROSS THE UNIVERSE and Woody Allen's CASSANDRA'S DREAM will screen as Gala Presentations during this year's event, running September 6-15, 2007.

Julie Taymor, USA

At once gritty, whimsical and highly theatrical, Revolution Studios' Across the Universe is a groundbreaking movie musical sprung from the imagination of renowned writer-director Julie Taymor (Frida, Titus, and the Broadway smash hit musical The Lion King) and writers Dick Clement & Ian La Frenais (The Commitments). Bringing together an original story and 30 revolutionary, generation-defining songs – including "Hey Jude," "I Am the Walrus," and "All You Need is Love" – the story of two star-crossed lovers is set against the backdrop of the 1960s, amid the turbulent years of anti-war protest, mind exploration and rock 'n roll.

Moving from the dockyards of Liverpool to the creative psychedelia of Greenwich Village, from the riot-torn streets of Detroit to the killing fields of Vietnam, Jude (Jim Sturgess) and Lucy (Evan Rachel Wood), along with a small group of friends and musicians, are swept up into the emerging anti-war and counterculture movements, with "Dr. Robert" (Bono) and "Mr. Kite" (Eddie Izzard) as their guides. Tumultuous forces outside their control ultimately tear the young lovers apart, forcing Jude and Lucy – against all odds – to find their own way back to each other. Produced by Suzanne Todd, Jennifer Todd, and Matthew Gross, ACROSS THE UNIVERSE is a Revolution Studios presentation of a Matthew Gross / Team Todd production. The film is distributed in North America by Columbia Pictures.

Woody Allen, UK

Set in contemporary London, CASSANDRA'S DREAM is a powerful and thrilling story about two brothers (Ewan McGregor and Colin Farrell) who are desperate to better their troubled lives. One is a chronic gambler up to his ears in debt; the other is a young man in love with a beautiful actress (newcomer Hayley Atwell) whom he has just recently met. Their lives gradually become entangled as a result of a sinister situation with intense and unfortunate results. Written and directed by Academy Award™ winner Woody Allen, the film also stars Tom Wilkinson and Sally Hawkins, and features an original score by Phillip Glass.

Produced by Letty Aronson, Stephen Tenenbaum and Gareth Wiley, CASSANDRA'S DREAM is an Iberville Productions Ltd production. The film is distributed in Canada by Christal Films Distribution and in the U.S. by The Weinstein Company.

Film critic Emanuel Levy offers reviews of independent cinema featured at different film festivals around the globe. The most popular indie film event is the Sundance Film Festival - search the Emanuel Levy movie review database for reviews of films from the Sundance Film Festival. visit

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