Festivals, Film
Sep 7, 2023

Local Filmmakers Shine At TIFF

The Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) didn’t let the strike deter the scope of the projects accepted into the festival, and used the strike to instead focus on local talent.

Image Still: ‘Solo’ Tortonto International Film Festival

Often overlooked for much bigger A-List names, local talent had a chance to show off their creativity and shine in the full spotlight at this year’s TIFF. Navigating the SAGAFTRA and WGA strikes is producing a host of winners and losers during a period of peak disruption for the film industry. You can count as clear victors local Canadian filmmakers as their homegrown films and TV series grab the spotlight at the Toronto Film Festival. A shifting Toronto film market with a spattering of American celebrities in town has local artists taking center stage as an entertainment industry in crisis bows out.

Jen Markowitz, director of Summer Qamp, a film about a camp in rural Alberta for queer and trans kids that will receive a world premiere in Toronto, says the lack of a Hollywood presence offers festgoers the chance to show support for movies like hers that focus on the marginalized.

“It’s an important time in the world right now for that community to feel affirmed in the way they see themselves represented onscreen,” she says.