Dean Spanley (UK-NZ)

Dir: Toa Fraser

The story: Based on Lord Dunsany's novel My Talks With Dean Spanley, this charts the relationship between a stiff Englishman and his son.

The cast: Peter O'Toole plays opposite Jeremy Northam as his son and Sam Neill as an eccentric dean.

The buzz: A co-production between New Zealand's General Film Corp and Atlantic Film Productions after horror The Ferryman. Fraser, who won the Sundance audience award with No 2, directs from a script by Alan Sharp. With O'Toole in the lead as a cranky old man who finally opens up, this looks like a three-hankie movie.

Int'l sales: NZ Film, (64) 4 382 7680

The Duchess (UK)

Dir: Saul Dibb

The story: A glamorous 18th century aristocrat defies contemporary conventions but is ultimately at the mercy of the inequalities of the age.

The cast: A-listers Keira Knightley and Ralph Fiennes alongside rising UK stars Dominic Cooper and Hayley Atwell and veteran Charlotte Rampling.

The buzz: Knightley gives her best performance since the Oscar-nominated Pride & Prejudice, and Fiennes almost steals the show as her distant husband. Dibb's move to period romp after the gritty urban thriller Bullet Boy has been a big success. It is based on the bestselling historical biography by Amanda Foreman.

Int'l sales: Pathe Int'l, (44) 20 7462 4427

Fifty Dead Men Walking (Can-UK)

Dir: Kari Skogland

The story: A drama inspired by Martin McGartland's shocking real-life story as a British spy in the IRA.

The cast: Rising UK star Jim Sturgess plus Ben Kingsley, Rose McGowan and Kevin Zegers.

The buzz: Shot under tight security on location, this Canada-UK co-production is a significant step up for Skogland whose career has been mostly in TV. Brutally realistic and graphic, it should provide an interesting bookend to Steve McQueen's Cannes favourite Hunger.

Int'l sales: HandMade Films, (44) 20 7518 8230.

The Loss Of A Teardrop Diamond (US)

Dir: Jodie Markell

The story: A social scandal' The steamy Deep South' It must be Tennessee Williams. A socialite transgresses when she falls for a brooding farmhand. When a priceless jewel goes missing, accusations fly and manners go out of the antebellum window.

The cast: Bryce Dallas Howard and Chris Evans as the lovers, plus Ellen Burstyn.

The buzz: IM Global started pre-sales at AFM 2006 and it flew off the shelves. The combination of the two underexposed leads and Burstyn's talent promises much.

Int'l sales: IM Global, (1) 310 777 3590

North American sales: ICM, (1) 310 550 4000

The Lucky Ones (US)

Dir: Neil Burger

The story: A trio of Iraq veterans on leave in the US take a road trip and learn that some of the biggest battles lie within.

The cast: Rachel McAdams, Michael Pena, Tim Robbins.

The buzz: One of the few recent films about the war in Iraq that does not try to make a political statement and for that it is all the more refreshing. McAdams' star turn will charm audiences and is well supported by selfless work from Robbins and Pena.

Int'l sales: QED International, (1) 310 273 3004

Nothing But The Truth (US)

Dir: Rod Lurie

The story: A Washington DC reporter is imprisoned after she refuses to divulge her sources following an explosive scoop that reveals the name of a covert agent.

The cast: Kate Beckinsale, Vera Farmiga, Matt Dillon.

The buzz: Lurie returns to political film-making after 2000's The Contender, with a timely story of betrayal that echoes the real-life outing of CIA agent Valerie Plame.

Int'l sales: Syndicate Films, (1) 310 689 7450

The Other Man (UK)

Dir: Richard Eyre

The story: A husband flies to Milan to confront a man he believes may have had a not-so-brief encounter with his wife.

The cast: Liam Neeson and Laura Linney as the couple, Antonio Banderas as the other man, Romola Garai as the wise daughter who advises against the trip.

The buzz: As anybody who saw Notes On A Scandal can attest, Eyre does jealousy and sexual obsession very well.

Int'l sales: Ealing Studios International, (44) 20 8567 6655

North American sales: ICM, (1) 310 550 4000


Passchendaele (Can)

Dir: Paul Gross

The story: Second World War epic about a Canadian sergeant who returns to the front to save his lover's brother.

The cast: Writer-director Paul Gross stars alongside Caroline Dhavernas, Gil Bellows, Michael Greyeyes and Meredith Bailey.

The buzz: Canadians have never made a good movie about their nation's significant wartime record. Gross is probably the only person who could have pulled off the most expensive Canadian film ever. Could this be the country's Gallipoli'

Int'l sales: Rhombus International, (1) 416 971 7856

Pride And Glory (US)

Dir: Gavin O'Connor

The story: A police family's code of ethics is put to the test when a man investigates a case involving his older brother that forces him to choose between his loyalty to family and to the force.

The cast: Edward Norton, Colin Farrell, Jon Voight, Jennifer Ehle.

The buzz: Norton is one of the finest actors of his generation and should make an intriguing on-screen pairing with the feisty Farrell.

Int'l sales: New Line International

Public Enemy No 1 (Mesrine: L'Ennemi Public No 1) (Fr-Can)

Dir: Jean-Francois Richet

The story: The life of France's infamous gangster Jacques Mesrine.

The cast: Vincent Cassel in the title role alongside Cecile de France and Mathieu Amalric.

The buzz: Both a thriller and a biopic, this is screening as a work in progress at Toronto but it is already piping hot thanks to a script from rising star Abdel Raouf Dafri. Cassel looks very tasty in the lead.

Int'l sales: Reine Sales, (33) 1 44 90 73 90

The Secret Life Of Bees (US)

Dir: Gina Prince-Bythewood

The story: A girl in 1960s South Carolina flees her abusive father and travels to a town where she meets three bee-keeping sisters and learns more about the life of her late mother.

The cast: Dakota Fanning stars alongside Queen Latifah, Jennifer Hudson, Sophie Okonedo and Alicia Keys.

The buzz: The top-notch female cast is about as good as it gets while the story should offer sufficient mystery and excitement to keep audiences engaged.

Int'l sales: Fox International

Who Do You Love (US)

Dir: Jerry Zaks

The story: Nivola plays one half of the sibling partnership that founded Chess Records, which became the US's leading blues label and made the careers of Muddy Waters, Etta James, Chuck Berry and Bo Diddley among many others.

The cast: Alessandro Nivola, Jon Abrahams.

The buzz: Nivola has been paying his dues, working alongside the best and brightest for more than a decade. This could be his turn to shine.

North American sales: WMA, (1) 310 859 4000

One Week (Can)

Dir: Michael McGowan

The story: A young man diagnosed with a terminal illness decides to take one last motorcycle ride across the country.

The cast: Joshua Jackson, Liane Balaban and Campbell Scott.

The buzz: Writer-director McGowan impressed with gentle family drama Saint Ralph. One Week raises his game significantly. This has top-notch performances from Jackson, Balaban and Scott.

Int'l sales: Maximum Films International, (1) 416 960 0300

Firaaq (Ind)

Dir: Nandita Das

The story: The emotional journey of those caught up in the religious clashes in the Indian state of Gujarat in early 2002.

The cast: Ensemble cast includes veterans Naseeruddin Shah, Paresh Rawal, Deepti Naval, Raghuvir Yadav, Sanjay Suri and Tisca Chopra alongside newcomers Shehmat Khan and Shahana Goswami.

The buzz: Celebrated actress Nandita Das, who was at last year's Tiff with Before The Rains and Four Women, makes her directorial debut with a film which may stir up controversy on its Indian release in November.

Int'l sales: Percept Picture Company, (91) 22 3042 8833

A Year Ago In Winter (Im Winter Ein Jahr) (Ger)

Dir: Caroline Link

The story: A family comes to terms with the death of its only son, bringing to light some troubling secrets.

The cast: Corinna Harfouch plays the grieving mother, Karoline Herfurth her daughter and Josef Bierbichler the artist commissioned to paint a portrait of the son.

The buzz: The latest film from Caroline Link who won the best foreign-language Oscar for Nowhere In Africa, which screened in Toronto in 2002. Based on the novel by Scott Campbell, the film is co-produced by Constantin Film and Bavaria Film.

Int'l sales: Celluloid Dreams, (33) 1 49 70 03 70


$5 A Day (US)

Dir: Nigel Cole

The story: A man is tricked into taking a road trip with his petty conman father in a wild bid at reconciliation.

The cast: Christopher Walken, Alessandro Nivola, Sharon Stone, Amanda Peet, Peter Coyote.

The buzz: A good road movie will always be a highlight at any festival and a couple of hours on the highway with Walken and the likeable Nivola can be no bad thing.

Int'l sales: ThinkFilm, (44) 20 7298 6200

North American sales: Endeavor, (1) 310 248 2000, WMA (1) 310 859 4000

Middle Of Nowhere (US)

Dir: John Stockwell

The story: Youngsters from different sides of the track realise they cannot rely on adults so sell marijuana to overcome their financial problems, forming a strong bond in the process.

The cast: Anton Yelchin and Eva Amurri from Saved! star alongside Susan Sarandon, Willa Holland and Justin Chatwin.

The buzz: Three likeable young leads led by rising star Yelchin, who earned strong reviews in Charlie Bartlett, and stars alongside Christian Bale in next year's Terminator Salvation.

Int'l sales: Inferno Entertainment, (1) 323 848 8973

North American sales: ICM, (1) 310 550 4000

Return To Hansala (Retorno A Hansala) (Sp)

Dir: Chus Gutierrez

The story: When a group of Moroccan migrants drown off the Spanish mainland, a funeral-home manager and the sister of one of the dead boys attempt to bring the bodies back to Hansala.

The cast: Jose Luis Garcia Perez and Moroccan newcomer Farah Hamed alongside Antonio de la Torre.

The buzz: Not shy of controversial subjects, Gutierrez's debut as a director, Sublet, saw her nomination as best new director at the Goyas in 1993. The film promises to be a touching story of a tragic real event.

Int'l sales: Muac Films, (34) 914 014643

Skin (UK-S Afr)

Dir: Anthony Fabian

The story: Based on true events, this is the story of Sandra Laing, a black girl who was born to conservative white parents in apartheid South Africa in 1955.

The cast: Sophie Okonedo in the lead, with Alice Krige and Sam Neill as her parents.

The buzz: UK-South Africa co-production has all the signs of being a heart-rending triumph-over-adversity tale. Okonedo has already graced the Oscar nominations (Hotel Rwanda in 2005) and this could be her graduation to the major league.

Int'l sales: The Little Film Company, (1) 818 762 6999

Treeless Mountain (S Kor)

Dir: Kim So-yong

The story: A six-year-old and her sister go to live with their alcoholic aunt in the countryside when their mother goes in search of her estranged husband.

The cast: Newcomers Kim Hee-yeon and Kim Song-hee.

The buzz: Kim's directorial debut In Between Days screened at Toronto in 2006 and won awards at festivals including Sundance and Berlin. This story of abandonment and family ties was inspired by Kim's own experience and was developed at the Sundance writers' and directors' labs.

Int'l sales: Memento Films International, (33) 1 53 34 90 29

Two-Legged Horse (Iran)

Dir: Samira Makhmalbaf

The story: Ten-year-old Mirvais is paid a dollar a day to carry a disabled boy to and from school. But the passenger is never happy: he wanted his father to buy him a real horse.

The cast: Unknowns including Ziya Mirza Mohamad, Haroun Ahad and Gol Gotay Karimi.

The buzz: Makhmalbaf, who returns to Toronto five years after her last visit with At Five In The Afternoon, has been a critical and festival favourite since her 1998 debut The Apple. This film had a troubled production - it was suspended after the Afghanistan set was bombed, and the screenplay was turned down by Iran's Censorship Committee - but it promises to be an arthouse gem.

Int'l sales: Wild Bunch, (33) 1 53 01 50 30

Under The Tree (Indonesia)

Dir: Garin Nugroho

The story: A group of young Balinese women search for the meaning of identity and parenthood.

The cast: Newcomers Ayu Laksmi, Ikranagara and Aryani Kriegenburg-Willems alongside model-turned-actor Nadia Saphira and award-winning actor Marcella Zalianty (Brownies).

The buzz: Nugroho returns to Toronto two years after Opera Jawa screened at the festival. Like his previous film, Under The Tree features sequences of Balinese dancing and was shot mostly inside the homes of its actors.

Int'l sales: Set Film/Oro-Oro Film Arts, (62) 21 7272 99227/26

The Window (La Ventana) (Sp-Arg)

Dir: Carlos Sorin

The story: On the last day of his life, 80-year-old Antonio contemplates his past as he waits for his son to return home.

The cast: Award-winning screenwriter Antonio Larreta, Carla Peterson and Luis Luque star alongside unknowns Emilse Roldan, Alberto Ledesma and Maria del Carmen Jimenez.

The buzz: Festival favourite Sorin has won numerous prizes around the world for his previous films, which have also enjoyed solid arthouse sales. This promises to be another closely observed work about the human condition and one that is sure to get the tears flowing.

Int'l sales: Bavaria Films International, (49) 89 6499 3531


Aide-Toi Et Le Ciel T'Aidera (Fr)

Dir: Francois Dupeyron

The story: The long-suffering matriarch of the Mousse family is determined not to let anything spoil her daughter's wedding day.

The cast: Felicite Wouassi (La Haine) stars in the meaty lead role. Veteran Claude Rich co-stars as the elderly man she turns to for help. The cast also includes Monsieur Ibrahim's Mata Gabin.

The buzz: Francois Dupeyron returns to Toronto with another film exploring the non-white community in France five years after Monsieur Ibrahim screened there. This was the first acquisition of a finished film for newly launched international sales company Kinology.

Int'l sales: Kinology, (33) 9 51 47 43 44

Appaloosa (US)

Dir: Ed Harris

The story: Two lawmen seek to bring a ruthless rancher to justice while battling the temptations of a provocative woman.

The cast: Viggo Mortensen, Ed Harris, Renee Zellweger, Jeremy Irons.

The buzz: Westerns are an acquired taste but good ones usually find their niche and this is a top-notch cast. Michael London's Groundswell Productions misfired with The Mysteries Of Pittsburgh and Smart People and will be looking to reverse their fortunes with Appaloosa.

Int'l sales: New Line International

The Sea Wall (Un Barrage Contre Le Pacifique) (Fr-Cambodia-Bel)

Dir: Rithy Panh

The story: The matriarch of a small land-owning family in 1930s French Indochina builds a dam to keep out the sea with the help of the local peasants.

The cast: Isabelle Huppert stars alongside Gaspard Ulliel (Hannibal Rising) and French TV actress Astrid Berges-Frisbey.

The buzz: Cambodian-born director Rithy Panh's second visit to Toronto after S21, The Khmer Rouge Death Machine in 2003. A firm festival favourite, Panh's Le Papier Ne Peut Pas Envelopper La Braise was named best documentary at the 2007 European Film Awards.

Int'l sales: Films Distribution, (33) 1 53 10 33 99

The Brothers Bloom (US)

Dir: Rian Johnson

The story: Two rascals and professional conmen embark on one final swindle that involves a beautiful heiress and a romantic global adventure.

The cast: Adrien Brody, Mark Ruffalo, Rachel Weisz.

The buzz: When Summit Entertainment swooped on the domestic rights in late 2007 and yanked the film from a surefire Sundance slot, the rookie distributor teamed up with one of Hollywood's hottest indie directors. All eyes will be on Johnson's follow-up to his acclaimed Sundance 2005 hit Brick.

Int'l sales: The Weinstein Company International, (1) 646 862 3400

Disgrace (Australia-S Afr)

Dir: Steve Jacobs

The story: A Cape Town professor and his daughter are the victims of a vicious attack.

The cast: John Malkovich stars with South African newcomer Jessica Haines as the daughter.

The buzz: Husband and wife team of Jacobs and writer Anna-Maria Monticelli, who made their debuts with La Spagnola (2001), optioned this adaptation of the Booker-winning JM Coetzee novel. It wrapped more than two years ago, but recently won the Australian Writers' Guild Award.

Int'l sales: Fortissimo Films, (31) 20 627 3215

Genova (UK)

Dir: Michael Winterbottom

The story: A British man moves to Genoa with his two daughters after the death of his wife.

The cast: Colin Firth plays the grieving father, with Catherine Keener as the love interest and Hope Davis as his dead wife.

The buzz: This reteams Winterbottom with writer Laurence Coriat after their 1999 critical hit Wonderland. The pair are now collaborating on TV drama Seven Days. Genova is described as 'Don't Look Now mixed with the sexiness of Stealing Beauty'. Winterbottom's previous film, A Mighty Heart, screened at Cannes last year, and he was last at Toronto with A Cock And Bull Story in 2005.

Int'l sales: Hanway Films, (44) 20 7290 0750

Ghost Town (US)

Dir: David Koepp

The story: Bertram Pincus is an unlikeable soul who develops the ability to commune with ghosts when he is miraculously revived after death. One particular spirit coaxes Pincus into breaking up the impending marriage of his widow.

The cast: Ricky Gervais, Greg Kinnear, Tea Leoni, Kristen Wiig.

The buzz: Gervais will ensure this is the hottest comedy ticket in town and should combine well with Kinnear, a natural comedian, in this broad slice of entertainment from DreamWorks and Spyglass. It is Indiana Jones And The Kingdom Of The Crystal Skull screenwriter Koepp's first foray into comedy directing.

Int'l sales: PPI/Spyglass

Heaven On Earth (Can)

Dir: Deepa Mehta

The story: An Indian bride finds herself in an abusive relationship with an Indo-Canadian. To escape her terrible situation, she fashions an alternative reality.

The cast: Bollywood starlet Preity Zinta stars with Vansh Bhardwaj.

The buzz: Mehta is one of Canada's most commercially consistent film-makers - her Oscar-nominated Water earned $13m worldwide - and if Zinta's fanbase is anything to go by, this could be just as strong.

Int'l sales: Maximum Films International, (1) 416 960 0300

Is There Anybody There' (UK-US)

Dir: John Crowley

The story: An anarchic former magician and a lonely boy with a morbid streak form an unlikely friendship.

The cast: Michael Caine, David Morrissey, Anne-Marie Duff and Leslie Phillips star alongside Bill Milner, who made his impressive debut in Son Of Rambow.

The buzz: Irish director Crowley has proved his credentials with Boy A and Intermission and this is described as a 'unique comedy which is both moving and funny'. It was written by first-timer Peter Harness.

Int'l sales: Odyssey Entertainment, (44) 20 7520 5620

Management (US)

Dir: Stephen Belber

The story: Romantic comedy about the son of motel owners who pursues an ambitious careerist in the hope of spending the rest of his life with her.

The cast: Jennifer Aniston, Steve Zahn, Woody Harrelson.

The buzz: Aniston demonstrated big-screen charisma and held her own against Vince Vaughn in the hit 2006 release The Break-Up. Her hip credentials bode well in this pairing with rising funnyman Zahn.

Int'l sales: Kimmel International, (1) 212 431 5550

North American sales: CAA, (1) 424 288 2000

Good (UK)

Dir: Vicente Amorim

The story: This explores the Nazis' rise to power in 1930s Germany through the eyes of an ordinary man and his family who become engulfed by the tide of fascism.

The cast: Viggo Mortensen as the protagonist alongside scene-stealing Brits Jason Isaacs, Mark Strong and rising star Jodie Whittaker.

The buzz: Amorim, the Brazilian director whose The Middle Of The World (O Caminho Das Nuvens) was at Toronto in 2003, has made a modern parable which shows just how easy it was to support the Nazis. Producer Miriam Segal has overcome a series of hurdles, including a collapsed first incarnation with Lone Scherfig at the helm, to bring the story to the screen.

Int'l sales: Odd Lot International, (1) 310 652 0999


33 Scenes From Life (Ger-Pol) Dir: Malgoska Szumowska

Acne (Ur-Arg-Sp-Mex) Dir: Federico Veiroj

Adela (Phil) Dir: Adolfo Alix Jr

All Around Us (Jap) Dir: Ryosuke Hashiguchi

Blind Sunflowers (Sp) Dir: Jose Luis Cuerda

Cloud 9 (Ger) Dir: Andreas Dresen

Country Teacher (Cz-Ger-Fr) Dir: Bohdan Slama

Country Wedding (Ice) Dir: Valdis Oskarsdottir

Dernier Maquis (Fr-Alg) Dir: Rabah Ameur-Zaimeche

Mark Of An Angel (L'Empreinte De L'Ange) (Fr) Dir: Safy Nebbou

Un Ete Sans Point Ni Coup Sur (Can) Dir: Francis Leclerc

Fear Me Not (Den) Dir: Kristian Levring

A Film With Me In It (Ire) Dir: Ian Fitzgibbon

Flame & Citron (Den-Ger) Dir: Ole Christian Madsen

The Ghost (Rus) Dir: Karen Oganesyan

Goodbye Solo (US) Dir: Ramin Bahrani

El Greco (Gr-Sp-Hun) Dir: Iannis Smaragdis

Summer Hours (L'Heure D'Ete) (Fr) Dir: Olivier Assayas

Horn Of Plenty (Sp-Cub) Dir: Juan Carlos Tabio

In The Shadow Of The Naga Phawat (Thai) Dir: Pawat Panangkasiri

Jerichow (Ger) Dir: Christian Petzold

Katia's Sister (Het Zusje Van Katia) (Neth) Dir: Mijke de Jong

Khamsa (Fr) Dir: Karim Dridi

Knitting (Ch) Dir: Lichuan Yin

Laila's Birthday (Pal Terr-Tun-Neth) Dir: Rashid Masharawi

Linha De Passe (Bra) Dirs: Walter Salles, Daniela Thomas

Lion's Den (Arg-SK-Br) Dir: Pablo Trapero

Lost Song (Can) Dir: Rodrigue Jean

Machan (It-Ger-Sri Lanka) Dir: Uberto Pasolini

Mommy Is At The Hairdressers (Maman Est Chez Le Coiffeur) (Can) Dir: Lea Pool

Mothers & Daughters (Can) Dir: Carl Bessai

My Mother, My Bride And I (Ger) Dir: Hans Steinbichler

The Narrows (US) Dir: Francois Velle

Native Dancer (Kaz-Rus-Fr-Ger) Dir: Guka Omarova

O'Horten (Nor) Dir: Bent Hamer

Pandora's Box (Turk-Fr-Ger-Bel) Dir: Yesim Ustaoglu

Patrik, Age 1.5 (Swe) Dir: Ella Lemhagen

Pedro (US) Dir: Nicholas Oceano

Radio Love (Sp) Dir: Leonardo Armas

The Rest Of The Night (It) Dir: Francesco Munzi

Restless (Is-Can-Ger-Fr-Bel) Dir: Amos Kollek

Revanche (Austria) Dir: Gotz Spielmann

Sugar (US) Dirs: Ryan Fleck, Anna Boden

Teza (Ethiopia-Ger-Fr) Dir: Haile Gerima

Three Wise Men (Fin) Dir: Mika Kaurismaki

Toronto Stories (Can) Dirs: Sook-Yin Lee, Sudz Sutherland, David Weaver, Aaron Woodley

Wendy And Lucy (US) Dir: Kelly Reichardt

White Night Wedding (US) Dir: Baltasar Kormakur

[BX] Me And Orson Welles (UK-US)

Dir: Richard Linklater

The story: A teenager gets his break when he chances on Orson Welles' Mercury Theatre company rehearsing in New York.

The cast: Teen heart-throb Zac Efron gets to prove his acting chops alongside Claire Danes, Ben Chaplin and newcomer Christian McKay, who may steal the show as Orson Welles.

The buzz: Linklater, whose School Of Rock was at Toronto in 2003, spent the best part of a decade looking for an actor to play Welles. He found McKay via his one-man show, Rosebud, last year.

US sales: Cinetic, (1) 212 204 7979

Int'l sales: Odyssey Entertainment, (44) 20 7520 5610

Miracle At St Anna (US)

Dir: Spike Lee

The story: Four African-American soldiers, serving in the US Army's all-black 92nd Buffalo Soldier Division in Tuscany during the Second World War, are trapped behind enemy lines.

The cast: Derek Luke, Michael Ealy, Laz Alonso, Omar Benson Miller, John Leguizamo.

The buzz: Originally tipped to screen at Venice, this is something of a personal tale for Lee - two of his uncles served in the war - and arrives after the director's spat with Clint Eastwood over the portrayal of African Americans in the conflict.

Int'l sales: TF1, (33) 1 41 41 21 68

New York, I Love You (US)

Dir: Fatih Akin, Yvan Attal, Randy Balsmeyer, Allen Hughes, Shunji Iwai, Scarlett Johansson, Shekhar Kapur, Joshua Marston, Mira Nair, Natalie Portman, Brett Ratner, Wen Jiang and Andrei Zvyagintsev

The story: A portmanteau of love stories set in and addressed to the Big Apple.

The cast: Shia LaBeouf, Blake Lively, Hayden Christensen, Orlando Bloom, Ethan Hawke, Christina Ricci.

The buzz: So many star directors, so many stars. The curiosity factor alone will make this a must-see.

Int'l sales: QED International, (1) 310 273 3004

North American sales: WMA, (1) 310 859 4000

Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist (US)

Dir: Peter Sollett

The story: A broken-hearted occasional bass player meets a young woman in the course of a crazy night in search of a famous band's secret show.

The cast: Michael Cera, Kat Dennings.

The buzz: Cera is experiencing a meteoric rise after star turns in Juno and Superbad, while Dennings will be familiar to TV viewers for her appearances in the likes of CSI and ER.

Int'l sales: Sony Pictures Releasing International

Religulous (US)

Dir: Larry Charles

The story: The arch agent provocateur Larry Charles swings back into action following the global success of Borat, with an irreverent documentary hosted by Bill Maher that takes a swipe at the world's religions.

The buzz: If US TV talk-show host Maher can keep his bitterness in check, this might make for interesting viewing. However early word from test screenings has not been wildly enthusiastic. Should make for entertaining dinner-party conversation at any rate.

Int'l sales: IM Global, (1) 310 777 3590

Slumdog Millionaire (UK)

Dir: Danny Boyle

The story: A teenager tries to contact his long-lost sweetheart by appearing on the Indian version of Who Wants To Be A Millionaire'

The cast: Dev Patel, from cult UK TV show Skins, stars alongside popular Indian actors Anil Kapoor and Irfan Khan.

The buzz: Shot in India at the beginning of the year, this is written by The Full Monty's Simon Beaufoy. Boyle, whose Millions was at Toronto in 2004, has always been good at eliciting performances from newcomers.

Int'l sales: Pathe International, (44) 20 7462 4427

A Woman In Berlin (Ger)

Dir: Max Farberbock

The story: Based on the diary of an anonymous woman, about the rape of German women by Red Army soldiers at the end of the Second World War.

The cast: Silver Bear and Lola winner Nina Hoss alongside a top-notch cast including August Diehl (The Counterfeiters), Rudiger Vogler and Juliane Kohler (Aimee & Jaguar).

The buzz: The book became an international bestseller published in more than 20 countries and could see this repeating the sales success of another Second World War drama, Downfall.

Int'l sales: Beta Cinema, (49) 89 673 469 829

Zack And Miri Make A Porno (US)

Dir: Kevin Smith

The story: Two best friends in dire financial straits make a porn film and fall in love in the process.

The cast: Seth Rogen, Elizabeth Banks.

The buzz: Porn stars Traci Lords and Katie Morgan enhance the cast, but the hot stuff here is Judd Apatow stalwart Rogen, whose fanboy and mainstream appeal could herald the first breakout commercial success for Smith.

Int'l sales: The Weinstein Company International, (1) 646 862 3400


Krabat (Ger)

Dir: Marco Kreuzpaintner

The story: Set in the 17th century, orphan Krabat is apprenticed to an evil sorcerer.

The cast: David Kross, soon to be seen opposite Kate Winslet in The Reader, stars with Daniel Bruhl and Christian Redl.

The buzz: The $15.5m fantasy film will have a wide release by Twentieth Century Fox in Germany on October 9 and comes a year after Kreuzpaintner's English-language debut Trade.

Int'l sales: Bavaria Film International, (49) 89 64 99 26 86

Mia Et Le Migou (Fr-It)

Dir: Jacques-Remy Girerd

The story: A celebration of family and ecological values, Mia is the animated story of a girl's encounter with a mystical being.

The cast: Dany Boon (Bienvenue Chez Les Ch'tis) plus award-winning actress Yolande Moreau and veteran Pierre Richard.

The buzz: A prolific producer, Girerd most recently directed Raining Cats And Frogs. Mia debuted at the Cannes market where it received good buzz. This is Girerd's first appearance in Toronto.

Int'l sales: Celluloid Dreams, (33) 1 49 70 03 70


Adam Resurrected (US)

Dir: Paul Schrader

The story: A circus entertainer and Second World War survivor escapes the horrors of the gas chambers and becomes the ringleader in a mental asylum.

The cast: Jeff Goldblum, Willem Dafoe.

The buzz: Goldblum's lead performance is already being spoken of as a potential awards winner. No surprise to learn that Schrader was drawn to the intense subject matter.

Int'l sales: Bleiberg Entertainment, (1) 310 273 0003

North American sales: ICM, (1) 310 550 4000


Uncertainty (US)

Dir: Scott McGehee, David Siegel

The story: A Sliding Doors-type tale about a young couple in love, standing by the Brooklyn Bridge on July 4, whose fate is altered by the toss of a coin.

The cast: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Olivia Thirlby.

The buzz: The latest from the directors of The Deep End and Bee Season, with a hip pair of young leads.

Int'l sales: Cinetic Media, (1) 212 204 7979


Gigantic (US)

Dir: Matt Aselton

The story: A disillusioned salesman at a high-end Swedish mattress company falls for the daughter of a loudmouth art collector.

The cast: Paul Dano, Zooey Deschanel, Ian Roberts, Robert Stanton, Ed Asner, Jane Alexander, John Goodman.

The buzz: Dano is becoming a draw after Little Miss Sunshine and that thunderous performance as a child preacher opposite Daniel Day-Lewis in There Will Be Blood. Goodman is said to be in fine comedic form.

Int'l sales: Fortissimo Films, (31) 20 627 3215

North American sales: Cinetic, (1) 212 204 7979

Lovely, Still (US)

Dir: Nik Fackler

The story: A lonely grocery-store worker finds a stranger in his home. The encounter blossoms into a love affair that asks questions of their prior actions and their place in life.

The cast: Martin Landau and Ellen Burstyn play the lovers. Elizabeth Banks co-stars.

The buzz: The combination of two of the world's finest working senior actors could be spellbinding.

North American sales: WMA, (1) 310 859 4000

Lymelife (US)

Dir: Derick Martini

The story: Love, family dynamics and the American Dream come under the spotlight in this 1970s-set tale that takes place in Long Island as an outbreak of Lyme disease threatens to destroy a community.

The cast: Rory Culkin, Alec Baldwin, Timothy Hutton, Kieran Culkin, Emma Roberts, Cynthia Nixon.

The buzz: Baldwin is always watchable, especially now 30 Rock has turned him into a comedy hit. The talented Rory Culkin adds to the edginess.

Int'l sales: WMA, (1) 310 859 4000

What Doesn't Kill You (US)

Dir: Brian Goodman

The story: The ties between friends from an Irish-Catholic neighbourhood in South Boston are tested by family circumstances and a police officer with his eye on the longtime pals.

The cast: Ethan Hawke and Mark Ruffalo play the leads with Donnie Wahlberg and Amanda Peet.

The buzz: Hip cast could infuse the crime genre with something fresh and make this one of the sleeper hits of the festival.

US distributor: Yari Film Group


At The Edge Of The World (US)

Dir: Dan Stone

The story: David vs Goliath documentary about an eco-activist's campaign in the Antarctic against the massive Japanese whaling fleet.

The buzz: Submarine scored a hit at Sundance with James Marsh's documentary Man On Wire and looks set to deliver another cracking non-fiction tale.

Int'l sales: Submarine, (1) 212 625 1410

Soul Power (US)

Dir: Jeffrey Levy-Hinte

The story: In 1974, celebrated US R&B acts performed with the top groups in Southern Africa for a three-night concert in Zaire. Organisers Hugh Masekela and Stewart Levine convinced boxing promoter Don King to combine the event with the 'Rumble In The Jungle' boxing match between Muhammad Ali and George Foreman.

The buzz: The producer of Roman Polanski: Wanted And Desired and Thirteen makes his feature directorial debut. If you are a fan of the likes of James Brown, BB King, Bill Withers and Celia Cruz, this could be for you.

Int'l sales: Submarine, (1) 212 625 1410

Sounds Like Teen Spirit: A Popumentary (UK)

Dir: Jamie Jay Johnson

The story: An affectionate look behind the scenes at the Junior Eurovision Song Contest for 10 to 15-year-olds.

The buzz: This promises to be much like Johnson's previous shorts (about mini-golf and robotic dogs) which were very funny without being patronising. The experienced hands of producers Elizabeth Karlsen and Stephen Woolley have guided him through production.

Int'l sales: Intandem Films, (44) 20 7851 3800


Edison and Leo (Can)

Dir: Neil Burns

The story: A fairytale gone wrong about an amoral inventor, his son Leo and the birth of electricity. From an original idea by George Toles, a long-time collaborator of Guy Maddin and perhaps even more eccentric.

The cast: With voice talents of Powers Boothe and Gregory Smith.

The buzz: As Persepolis and Waltz With Bashir proved, animated films with adult themes are continuing to stir interest. With a budget of $10m, the first stop-motion animated feature from Canada hopes to capture some of the buzz. Definitely not kids' stuff though.

Int'l sales: Perfect Circle Productions, (1) 604 219 6700

Profiles by Martin Blaney, Sarah Cooper, Patricia Dobson, Jeremy Kay, Raul Solorzano, Denis Seguin and Nancy Tartaglione-Vialatte.

The Secret Of Moonacre (UK-Hun-Fr)

Dir: Gabor Csupo

The story: A 13-year-old orphan discovers the truth about an ancient curse that will destroy her uncle's haunted home unless she finds the magical moon pearls.

The cast: The Golden Compass' Dakota Blue Richards with Ioan Gruffudd, Tim Curry, Natascha McElhone and Juliet Stevenson.

The buzz: Csupo's Bridge To Terabithia was a family hit last year. He was also part of the creative team behind the Rugrats and Wild Thornberries movies so he knows what makes the kids happy.

Int'l sales: Velvet Octopus, (44) 20 7287 1900

US sales: Endeavor Independent, (1) 310 248 2000.