Jean-Claude Van Damme's comeback contender JCVD will make its international premiere as the opening night film of the Midnight Madness programme at the Toronto International Film Festival. The Muscles from Brussels plays a down-and-out version of himself suddenly thrust into one of his own action films.

The late-night cult sidebar features three world premieres, including JT Petty's The Burrowers (US), a horror spin on John Ford's western The Searchers, Marcel Sarmiento and Gadi Harel's Deadgirl (US), about a dead girl who comes back to life, and Miguel Marti's Sexykiller (Spain), the story of a fashion-obsessed medical student with a taste for blood.

Other titles in the line-up include Toshio Lee's Detroit Metal City (Japan), Mark Hartley's Not Quite Hollywood (US-Australia) and Pascal Laugier's Martyrs (France-Canada).

Four world premieres comprise the Sprockets Family Zone, a series presented by TIFF's family-oriented film festival. Marco Kreuzpaintner's Krabat (Germany), starring Daniel Bruehl, Christian Redl and David Kross, tells the story of a 17th century apprentice in the dark arts. Jacques-Remy Girerd's animation Mia Et Le Migou (France-Italy) is the story of a young girl's encounter with a mystical being. Gabor Csupo's The Secret Of Moonacre (UK-Hungary-France) stars Ioan Gruffudd, Tim Curry, Natascha McElhone, Juliet Stevenson and Dakota Blue Richards in an adventure of an orphan in a haunted manor house. Thomas Borch Nielsen's animation Sunshine Barry & The Disco Worms (Denmark-Germany) tells about the travails of an earthworm who yearns to quit his job at a compost plant to pursue his disco dreams.

Curated by Cinematheque Ontario programmer Andrea Picard, the avant-garde Wavelengths sidebar features six programmes showcasing works from James Benning, Olaf Nicolai, Pat O'Neill, Nathaniel Dorsky, Jennifer Reeves, Ben Russell and Jean-Marie Straub.