Let the Oscar buzz start building for “La La Land” after director Damien Chazelle’s acclaimed movie musical has taken the Toronto International Film Festival by storm, winning the fest’s top award.
“La La Land”, which already earned serious buzz after its premiere at the Venice Film Festival, won TIFF’s People’s Choice Award for 2016, which is voted on by ordinary TIFF festival-goers.
“La La Land” stars Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone, and the TIFF win places the film as a frontrunner for the 2017 Oscars, with The Hollywood Reporter noting that “Toronto ballots have traditionally chimed with the Academy voting, as previous TIFF audience award winners like ’12 Years a Slave’, ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ and the Brie Larson-starrer ‘Room’ last year rode a wave out of Toronto to Academy Awards glory after earning the People’s Choice award.”
Chazelle’s follow-up to his Oscar-winning “Whiplash” is set to be released in December.
Here’s the full list of 2016’s TIFF winners, announced at a ceremony on Sunday:
People’s Choice Award For Documentary: “I Am Not Your Negro,” Raoul Peck
People’s Choice Award For Midnight Madness: “Free Fire,” Ben Wheatley
Platform Prize: “Jackie,” Pablo Larrian
Platform Prize, Special Mention: “Hema Hema: Sing Me a Song While I Wait,” Khyentse Norbu
Best Canadian Feature Film: “Those Who Make Revolution Halfway Only Dig Their Own Graves,” Mathieu Denis and Simon Lavoie
Best Canadian First Feature Film: “Old Stone,” Johnny Ma
Prizes of the International Critics (FIPRESCI Prize) for Special Presentations Section: “I Am Not Madame Bovary,” Feng Xiaogang
Prizes of the International Critics (FIPRESCI Prize) for Discovery Section: “Kati Kati,” Mbithi Masya
Dropbox Discovery Programme Filmmakers Award: “Jeffrey,” Yanillys Perez
NETPAC Award For World or International Asian Film Premiere: “In Between,” Maysaloun Hamoud
Best Short Film: “Imago,” Ribay Gutierrez
Best Canadian Short Film: “Mutants,” Alexandre Dostie