Toronto After Dark Film Festival logoThe Toronto After Dark Film Festival has become a much anticipated staple of the city’s festival circuit, and a favourite among genre fans and filmmakers. After a season of holding the horror, sci-fi, action and cult showcase in August, the event will return to its original October slot, which also reunites it with the annual pre-Halloween Zombie Walk. Although, due to the closure of Bloor Cinema for renovations, this year’s record 17 screenings will be hosted at Toronto Underground Cinema. Founder Adam Lopez provided a sneak peek of this year’s line-up at Fan Expo, before publicly announcing the first wave of eight films. They include:

  • The opening gala, Monster Brawl, centers on a UFC-style arena that features fights between legendary horror movie monsters, such as Frankenstein and the Werewolf. It also stars several former headliners of the wrestling entertainment world, including Kevin Nash and Jimmy Hart.
  • Troma Entertainment’s Father’s Day will have its world premiere at the festival. The film follows a group of misfits attempting to catch a twisted serial killer. Troma also screened Poultrygeist at the festival in 2007.
  • From director Xavier Gens and starring Michael Biehn, Milo Ventimiglia and Rosanna Arquette, The Divide tells the story of a group of strangers trapped in the basement of a building after surviving the end of the world. Only now, they’ll have to survive each other.
  • Love is a widely anticipated sci-fi picture about an astronaut who loses contact with Earth and struggles to maintain his sanity in total isolation. The film features a powerful soundtrack by Angels and Airwaves, and a replica of the interior of the International Space Station reconstructed in a backyard.
  • Taking almost seven years to complete, Redline is a Japanese anime film about a dangerous, futuristic car race that takes place every five years across the planet Roboworld. The movie comes from anime elite, Takeshi Koike and Katsuhito Ishii.
  • The Theatre Bizarre is a collection of six unusual stories shown to a young woman in an abandoned cinema, hosted by a human puppet (Udo Kier). Of course, as the night goes on, it becomes apparent her tale will be the final one to be revealed.

Alongside the Zombie Walk, fest goers are also regaled with an undead double feature. “What do we want?” “Brains!” This year’s selections are:

  • Exit Humanity combines live-action and animated sequences to tell the story of a soldier forced to confront a deadly epidemic of the walking dead after the American Civil War. The tale is narrated by Brian Cox, and co-stars Bill Moseley and Stephen McHattie.
  • On a lighter note, Deadheads is a buddy comedy about a couple of undead slacker friends who go on a road trip to find one’s lost love, unaware they’re being chased by zombie bounty hunters.

The Toronto After Dark Film Festival runs October 20 – 27, 2011 at Toronto Underground Cinema. Passes are now on sale online.

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