Irish Abroad: The Lobster, Room, and Brooklyn head to Toronto

Three Irish feature films have been announced in the first swath of films that will play at the prestigious Toronto International Film Festival in September.

room_imageLenny Abrahamson’s eagerly awaited Room will have its Canadian Premiere. Emma O’Donoghue is adapting the story from her own best-selling novel, which is told from the perspective of a five-year-old boy, Jack, who is being held captive in a small room along with his mother. To him the room is his world, but his mother knows different having been held there for 7 years.

The film stars Brie Larson (Short Term 12, The Spectacular Now), Jacob Tremblay (The Smurfs 2, Somnia), Joan Allen (The Bourne Supremacy, Nixon) and William H. Macy (Shameless, Magnolia). Also joining the cast are Sean Bridgers (Rectify), Tom McCamus (The Samaritan) and Megan Park (What If).

Room is an Element Pictures and No Trace Camping production, in association with Telefilm Canada, Film4, and the Irish Film Board.


brooklyn_image-4John Crowley’s Brooklyn will have its Canadian Premiere, having wowed at Sundance in January. The story is set in the 1950s, and sees a young woman move from a small town in Ireland to Brooklyn, where she has the opportunity for work, for a future and for love.

The film is an adaptation of Colm Tóibín’s best-selling novel by the equally best-selling British author Nick Hornby. Intermission director John Crowley has gathered an all-star Irish and British cast for the film, that features Saoirse Ronan, Domhnall Gleeson, Emory Cohen, Jim Broadbent, and Julie Walters.

Brooklyn is an Irish/British co-production from Wildgaze Films, Finola Dwyer Productions, Parallel Films and Item 7. Brooklyn was co-financed by Bord Scannán na hÉireann/the Irish Film Board.



Yorgos Lanthimos’s critically acclaimed Irish co-production The Lobster will have its North American Premiere, having won a Jury Prize at the 68th Cannes Film Festival earlier this year.

the-lobster_imageThe Lobster is a love story set in the near future where single people, according to the rules of The City, are arrested and transferred to The Hotel.  There they are obliged to find a matching mate in 45 days.  If they fail, they are transformed into an animal of their choosing and released into The Woods.  A desperate Man escapes from The Hotel to The Woods where The Loners live and falls in love, although it is against their rules.

The film is the English language debut of Greek director Lanthimos, and stars Colin Farrell and Rachel Weisz with a supporting cast including Léa Seydoux, Ben Whishaw, John C.Reilly, Olivia Colman and Ashley Jensen.

The Lobster is written by Yorgos Lanthimos and Efthimis Filippou and produced by Ed Guiney, Lee Magiday, Ceci Dempsey and Yorgos Lanthimos. Executive Producers are Andrew Lowe, Tessa Ross and Sam Lavender with Isabel Davis as the lead executive for the BFI Film Fund. The film was developed by Element and Irish finance for the film came from the Irish Film Board with Rory Gilmartin as the lead executive for the IFB.

The 2015 Toronto International Film Festival will open with Jean-Marc Vallée’s Demolition, starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Naomi Watts. Other big names playing at the festival include Ridley Scott’s The Martian, Peter Sollett’s Freeheld, Brian Helgeland’s LEGEND, Stephen Frears’ The Program, and Roland Emmerich’s Stonewall.

The 40th annual Toronto International Film Festival runs September 10th to 20th.

GALAS announced July 28, 2015
Beeba Boys Director – Deepa Mehta, Canada (World Premiere)
Forsaken Director – Jon Cassar, Canada (World Premiere)
Freeheld Director – Peter Sollett, USA (World Premiere)
Hyena Road Director – Paul Gross, Canada (World Premiere)
Lolo Director – Julie Delpy, France (World Premiere)
LEGEND Director – Brian Helgeland, United Kingdom (International Premiere)
The Man Who Knew Infinity Director – Matt Brown, United Kingdom (World Premiere)
The Martian Director – Ridley Scott, USA (World Premiere)
The Program Director – Stephen Frears, United Kingdom (World Premiere)
Remember Director – Atom Egoyan, Canada (North American Premiere)
Septembers of Shiraz Director – Wayne Blair, USA (World Premiere)
Stonewall Director – Roland Emmerich, USA (World Premiere)
The Dressmaker Director – Jocelyn Moorhouse, Australia (World Premiere)

SPECIAL PRESENTATIONS announced July 28, 2015
Anomalisa Director – Charlie Kaufman, Duke Johnson, USA (Canadian Premiere)
Beasts of No Nation Director – Cary Fukunaga, Ghana (Canadian Premiere)
Black Mass Director – Scott Cooper, USA (Canadian Premiere)
Brooklyn Director – John Crowley, United Kingdom/Ireland/Canada (Canadian Premiere)
Colonia Director – Florian Gallenberger, Germany/Luxembourg/France (World Premiere)
The Danish Girl Director – Tom Hooper, United Kingdom/Sweden (North American Premiere)
The Daughter Director – Simon Stone, Australia (North American Premiere)
Desierto Director – Jonás Cuarón, Mexico (World Premiere)
Dheepan Director – Jacques Audiard, France (North American Premiere)
Families Director – Jean-Paul Rappeneau, France (World Premiere)
Guilty Meghna Gulzar, India (World Premiere)
I Smile Back Director – Adam Salky, USA (Canadian Premiere)
The Idol Hany Abu-Assad, United Kingdom/Palestine (World Premiere)
The Lady in the Van Director – Nicolas Hytner, USA (World Premiere)
Len and Company Director – Tim Godsall, USA (North American Premiere)
The Lobster Director – Yorgos Lanthimos, Ireland/ United Kingdom/ Greece/ France/ Netherlands (North American Premiere)
Louder than Bombs Director – Joachim Trier, Norway/France/Denmark (North American Premiere)
Maggie’s Plan Director – Rebecca Miller, USA (World Premiere)
Mountains May Depart Director – Jia Zhang-ke, China/France/Japan (North American Premiere)
Parched Director – Leena Yadav, India/USA (World Premiere)
Room Director – Lenny Abrahamson, Ireland/Canada (Canadian Premiere)
Sicario Director – Denis Villeneuve, USA (North American Premiere)
Son of Saul Director – László Nemes, Hungary (Canadian Premiere)
Spotlight Director – Tom McCarthy, USA (Canadian Premiere)
Sunset Song Director – Terence Davies, United Kingdom/Luxembourg (World Premiere)
Trumbo Director – Jay Roach, USA (World Premiere)
Un plus une Director – Claude Lelouch, France (World Premiere)
Victoria Director – Sebastian Schipper, Germany (Canadian Premiere)
Where To Invade Next Director – Michael Moore, USA (World Premiere)
Youth Director – Paolo Sorrentino, Italy/France/United Kingdom/Switzerland (North American Premiere)