Death becomes Toronto with Madness selections

Romero's newest, other sidebars set

George A. Romero's latest zombie movie and "Stuck," an urban chiller from Stuart Gordon starring Mena Suvari, are set to screen as part of the Toronto International Film Festival's Midnight Madness sidebar, organizers said Monday.

Toronto also will give the red-carpet treatment to the computer-animated feature "Terra," voiced by Evan Rachel Wood, Luke Wilson, Dennis Quaid, Amanda Peet, Danny Glover and James Garner.

"George A. Romero's Diary of the Dead," written and directed by Romero, finds film students shooting a zombie movie in the woods confronting a real-life zombie invasion. The Artfire Films/ Romero-Grunwald Prods. project, starring Michelle Morgan and Joshua Close, is being shopped domestically by John Sloss' Cinetic Media, with Nicolas Chartier's Voltage Pictures repping in foreign territories.

Also screening in Toronto's horror and gore program is "Stuck," which opens with a driver (Suvari) hitting a man (Stephen Rea) with her car while returning from a night of partying, as well as British director Adam Mason's "The Devil's Chair," a thriller starring Elize du Toit, Matt Berry, David Gant and Louise Griffiths.

Other Midnight Madness titles include Japanese director Hitoshi Matsumoto's "Dai-Nipponjin"; Hong Kong director Wilson Yip's "Flash Point," starring actor/fight choreographer Donnie Yen ("Iron Monkey"); and "Frontier(s)," a thriller from French director Xavier Gens.

Rounding out this year's program is French directors Julien Maury and Alexandre Bustillo's "A l'Interieur," which unspooled in May at the Festival de Cannes as part of International Critics Week, and Japanese director Fumihiko Sori's "Vexille," an animated feature set in the future.

Toronto's Wavelengths program, which focuses on avant-garde and experimental movies, has booked 25 films and videos, including new work from Ken Jacobs, Peter Hutton, David Gatten, Nicky Hamlyn and Pip Chodorov.

Among six curated programs is Canadian filmmaker Chris Chong's "Pool"; "Europa 2005, 27 Octobre," from the late Daniel Huillet and partner Jean-Marie Straub; U.S. director Jacobs' "Capitalism: Slavery"; and "The Butterfly in Winter," from German directors Ute Aurand and Maria Lang.

Toronto's Sprockets Family Zone program, meanwhile, will open with the red-carpet treatment for Snoot Entertainment's "Terra." Helmed by Canadian filmmaker Aristomenis Tsirbas, the film follows Mala, a precocious alien girl living on the beautiful and peaceful planet Terra.

Also in the Sprockets lineup is Philippe Calderon's "La citadelle assiegee," a live-action movie set in Africa; the animated feature "Max & Co." from Samuel and Frederic Guillaume; "Mid Road Gang" from Thai filmmakers Pantham Thongsang and Somkiat Vithuranit; "Nocturna," an animated feature from Spanish filmmakers Victor Maldonado and Adria Garcia; and Danish filmmaker Ole Bornedal's "The Substitute."
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