The Toronto International Film Festival has announced the recipients of its Tribute Awards at its upcoming gala fundraiser, which is part of the festival and takes place on September 11. The recipients include the acting ensemble in The Policeman, and the director Sam Mendes. Perhaps most excitingly, Brendan Fraser is receiving an award for his performance in drama movie The Whale.
These TIFF tributes are seen as awards season precursors, with Jessica Chastain(The Eyes of Tammy Faye), Anthony Hopkins (The Father), and Joaquin Phoenix (The Joker) winning theirs shortly before receiving Oscars for the same performances.
Brendan Fraser was a big star in the 1990s, in the likes of Encino Man, George of the Jungle, and The Mummy. He then went through something of a ‘wilderness’ period in his career, but has recently started a ‘Brenaissance’ which includes Steven Soderbergh’s No Sudden Move and should have involved him playing a villain in the now unfairly-scrapped Batgirl. He will soon be appearing in Martin Scorsese’s Killers of the Flower Moon. Darren Aronofsky’s already controversial The Whale, about a 600-pound reclusive English teacher is being tipped for awards recognition.
“Brendan Fraser gives a performance of staggering depth, power, and nuance in The Whale,” said TIFF CEO, Cameron Bailey. “This former Torontonian has been an action star, a screen comic, and a romantic lead. We’re thrilled to welcome him home as the actor behind one of the finest performances of the year.” Fraser’s parents are Canadian and he holds dual Canadian-American citizenship.
The Policeman cast, who are also receiving an award for their performances, includes Rupert Everett, Gina McKee, and Linus Roache as older versions of characters played by David Dawson, Emma Corrin, and Harry Styles. Sam Mendes is best known for directing the Bond movies Skyfall and Spectre, as well as the war movie 1917. His upcoming movie Empire of Light starring Colin Firth and Olivia Colman will be screened at TIFF.
Look out for our coverage from TIFF when the festival gets underway, from September 8-18, 2022.