With most of the industry having seen what it came for and Jeremy Piven having released his date(s) back into the Canadian wild, the 2008 Toronto Film Festival is all but over. But, as befits the event's stature, the whirlwind since our last Toronto Hell round-up deserves a closer look — from the Paris Hilton doc you'll never see again to Kevin Smith literally keeping Zack and Miri's shit together, enjoy the news others traveled thousands of miles for from the comfort of your own industrial slave galley: · Paris, Not France premiered Tuesday night, with its subject in attendance as promised and with a letter from its beleaguered sales agent reportedly making the rounds beforehand:
"With less than one hour to go and no restraining order in place, I feel comfortable now letting you all know that this film was the subject of legal threats and was almost not shown at all here at the festival. [...] I am hoping that Paris will see, with the audience tonight, that there is nothing to be afraid of here. And will eventually let the film be distributed. What was originally conceived to be a 20-minute puff piece extra on the DVD release for her album, has in fact become a fascinating examination of what it's like to be a star in our star-obsessed culture. I can guarantee you three things: you may be the only people to ever see this version, you will not be disappointed, and everyone will be asking you if you saw it."
A few trusted sources were there, one of whom seemed to like the film more in theory: "Paris Hilton didn’t create this system––she’s just amongst its most photogenic exploiters. Its lack of perspective on its subject is troubling in the present, but at the very least, Paris Not France may serve in the future as a valuable time capsule of that exploitation in action." Another was less convinced, lamenting a larger Hilton conspiracy against the fest as a whole. And like you, we sense ourselves forgetting about the whole imbroglio before we even finish this sentence. · IFC Films announced this morning that it acquired Steven Soderbergh's polarizing, 262-minute biopic Che for Stateside distribution. Look for one-week NYC/LA runs in December (followed by a VOD run in January), thus qualifying star Benicio Del Toro for an Oscar nomination that will probably go to Mickey Rourke anyway. · Speaking of Oscars, The Hollywood Reporter notes that this year's fest is relatively light on awards-season hopefuls. Come back, Diablo Cody, all is forgiven! · Kathryn Bigelow's actioner The Hurt Locker — which even mortal enemies David Poland and Jeffrey Wells agree is the best Iraq War film to date — also found a buyer, with the upstarts at Summit Entertainment grabbing it for under $2 million. · Kevin Smith has officially moved into the I-slew-Goliath phase of his predetermined ratings squabble over Zack and Miri Make a Porno, telling an interviewer at Premiere exactly how many frames of fecal matter you can get away with onscreen before the NC-17 ax falls. · Just for the record, Noah Emmerich's starring-role streak in New Line films — his latest being a cop in Pride and Glory — has nothing to do with the fact his brother runs the studio. If you don't believe him, ask him — it worked for Anne Thompson!