Arthur Newman, the first film by Dante Ariola, is about two people who adopt fake identities in order to forget their pasts and forge new lives. The great British actor Colin Firth (who is celebrating his 52nd birthday today) fakes his own death only to be reborn as a golf pro.
"It was the kind of film I was looking for. I was very fascinated by it," said Firth on the red carpet at the Elgin Theatre. "The concept of anonymity and invisibility and the struggle with that -- I have never really seen it treated this way before."
Having that freedom of being unknown and starting afresh is, of course, something an Oscar-winning actor can no longer afford. But Firth doesn't seem to regret his success. In fact, he spoke about how much he loves doing festivals, particularly TIFF.
"I have a very long relationship with Toronto – Canada in general too – and I always come here with a spring in my step," he said.
Also enjoying the city was Emily Blunt, who is promoting two films (this one and the festival's opener, Looper).
"I think there is a good mix of movies at this festival," she said. "I saw Argo. I saw Cloud Atlas. So I've gotten to see some great movies. I feel like I've been here forever."
The press laughed. Apparently we're not the only ones with TIFF tiredness.
Best red carpet moment:
Inside the Elgin, there are two red carpets side by side: One where ticket-holders parade past to get to their seats and the other for celebrities to talk to the media.
It's a little chaotic since many movie-goers stop to watch the press and cause a people traffic jam. In one such instance, the clog was caused by a mother, maybe in her late 50s, who was trying to convince her adult kids to stop so she could accost Colin Firth. Obviously embarrassed, the kids slowed down to a somnambulist's pace and in a hush voice chastised their mother. But mom was out of luck - ushers pressed them to take their seats.