The Girlfriend Experience
The Girlfriend Experience

The 2017 Toronto International Film Festival Primetime program, now in its third year, continues to gain traction in episodic programming with five powerful, dramatic and thought-provoking premieres from countries including Canada, Brazil, Germany and the United States. The 2017 lineup showcases works created by Amy Seimetz, Lodge Kerrigan, Sarah Polley, Baran bo Odar, Jantje Friese, David Simon, George Pelecanos, Andrucha Waddington and Jorge Furtado. The program includes Q&A sessions with show creators following each of the first screenings. ”

As the lines of length and venue for cinema are dissolving, I feel honored to be presenting some of the most cinematic, episodic content that is out in the world today,” said Michael Lerman, Primetime Programmer. “These shows not only represent great entertainment, but also the level of deep thought and research that can go into a long term storytelling project.”

This year’s lineup spotlights intense and provocative series such as The Deuce, starring James Franco and Maggie Gyllenhaal — a gritty new drama from David Simon and George Pelecanos (The Wire, Treme) that traces the evolution of the porn industry in NYC’s Times Square in the 1970s. The second season of The Girlfriend Experience, executive produced by Steven Soderbergh, is a reimagining of his 2009 critically acclaimed movie of the same name and explores the relationships between escorts and their elite clientele, for whom they provide far more than just sex. Season two focuses on entirely new characters and takes on a new format by following two parallel storylines, each written, directed and executive produced by Lodge Kerrigan and Amy Seimetz.

Adding further global appeal to the lineup, Dark, Netflix’s first German production, is a family saga with a supernatural twist, set in a present-day German town where the disappearance of a teenager exposes the double lives and long-hidden secrets of the local families. Under Pressure chronicles the daily routine of a medical team at a under-equipped and understaffed guerrilla hospital in a poverty-stricken community in Rio de Janeiro.

Previously announced series in the Canadian lineup include the CBC/Netflix original production Alias Grace, based on the award-winning novel by Margaret Atwood.

The 42nd Toronto International Film Festival runs September 7 to 17, 2017.

2017 Toronto International Film Festival Primetime program

Germany, 2 episodes
Showrunners: Baran bo Odar, Jantje Friese
Director: Baran bo Odar
World Premiere

The Deuce
USA, 2 episodes
Showrunners: David Simon, George Pelecanos
Directors: Michelle MacLaren, Ernest Dickerson
Episode 1, Canadian Premiere
Episode 2, World Premiere

The Girlfriend Experience
Season 2,  USA, 4 episodes
Showrunners and directors: Amy Seimetz, Lodge Kerrigan
World Premiere

Under Pressure
Brazil, 2 episodes
Showrunners: Andrucha Waddington, Jorge Furtado
Directors: Andrucha Waddington, Mini Kerti
International Premiere

Previously announced series in the Canadian lineup:

Alias Grace
Canada/USA, 2 episodes
Showrunner: Sarah Polley
Director: Mary Harron
World Premiere

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