Toronto: Lena Dunham, Jeremy Irons Films to Get World Premieres in New Juried Competition

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Lena Dunham

A dozen foreign pics will compete for the inaugural Platform Prize.

Ben Wheatley’s High-Rise, starring Jeremy Irons and Sienna Miller, and Fabienne Berthaud's English-language debut Sky, starring Lena Dunham and Diane Kruger, will receive world premieres at this year's Toronto Film Festival as part of the inaugural Platform juried competition, organizers said on Thursday.

Toronto also booked first looks for the latest films from Eva Husson, Joachim Lafosse, Gabriel Mascaro and China's He Ping for Platform, a new sidebar for non-Hollywood titles to complement the coveted People's Choice Award, previous winners of which include Precious, Slumdog Millionaire, 12 Years a Slave and, last year, The Imitation Game.

The Platform world premieres include Husson's Bang Gang (A Modern Love Story), a French film starring Daisy Broom and Fred Hotier; Ping's The Promised Land, starring Jiajia Wang and Yi Zhang; and Lafosse's France-Belgium co-production The White Knights, featuring Vincent Lindon and Valerie Donzelli.

With the winner set to receive a $25,000 cash prize, Platform also has Canadian entries from David Verbeek's Full Contact and Alan Zweig's Hurt, and North American premieres for Pablo Trapero's The Clan; Sue Brooks' Looking For Grace, starring Richard Roxburgh and Radha Mitchell; and Mascaro's Neon Bull, set in Brazil and starring Juliano Cazarre and Aline Santana.

Platform also comes as Toronto puts an extra spotlight on international auteur films without distribution or big-name stars as it continues fighting against Venice and Telluride for star-driven world premieres. The category also has a world debut for Martin Zandvliet's Land of Mine and an international premiere for French director Diasteme's skinhead family drama French Blood.

The 40th Toronto Film Festival is set to run from Sept. 10-20.