Oscars News: Two hot awards tickets are ‘Wild’ and ‘The Theory of Everything’

Among the five films that critic Todd McCarthy is most looking forward to at TIFF are two hot Oscar properties. “The Theory of Everything“: “British director James Marsh has done great work in documentaries (‘Man on Wire’) and television (‘Red Riding’), suggesting he could extract the best out of this look at the early relationship between Stephen Hawking (Eddie Redmayne) and his wife Jane (Felicity Jones). “Wild“: Here’s a Hollywood title — albeit on the indie side — with Reese Witherspoon tackling the sort of role she should have done more of during recent years, instead of manufactured projects. How will French-Canadian director Jean-Marc Vallee fare with his first film since ‘Dallas Buyers Club’?” Hollywood Reporter

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Anne Thompson has all the details of this year’s edition of the BFI filmfest in London, which has become an increasingly important stop on the road to Oscar. The festival opens on Oct. 8 with “The Imitation Game,” starring recent Emmy champ Benedict Cumberbatch (“Sherlock: His Last Vow”) as codebreaker Alan Turing. Other films set to receive gala treatment in London include Bennett Miller‘s wrestling drama “Foxcatcher,” “Whiplash,” the Miles Teller and J.K. Simmons-starring film about a young drumming prodigy and his abusive instructor, Jason Reitman‘s “Men Women and Children,” Mike Leigh‘s “Mr. Turner,” which stars Timothy Spall as British artist J.M.W. Turner, Reese Witherspoon-starrer “Wild,” Jon Stewart‘s “Rosewater,” and the world premiere of “Testament of Youth,” based on Vera Brittain‘s memoir of World War I. Thompson on Hollywood

What are the most anticipated movies this year at the Toronto Film Festival? According to a new survey, the top slot is taken by “Wild” (Reese Witherspoon). The next four are “The Equalizer” (Denzel Washington), “The Judge” (Robert Downey, Jr.), “Foxcatcher” (Steve Carell), and “Men, Women and Children” (Adam Sandler). Dave Karger says, “Toronto is where positive Oscar buzz starts to build, when post-summer audiences are hungry for serious stories rather than action-packed popcorn movies.” Fandango

Steve Pond reminds that the Toronto Film Festival has showcased the eventual Oscar Best Picture winner seven years straight, but “it won’t be easy to extend the record” this year. He says that organizers “played hardball” this time about films that wanted to be seen at other festivals. As a result, Venice, Telluride, and especially New York picked up some very desirable films, including “Birdman” (Michael Keaton), “Gone Girl” (Ben Affleck), and “Inherent Vice” (Joaquin Phoenix) The Wrap

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Kyle Buchanan focuses on several lesser-known titles that he believes “everyone will be talking about” in Toronto. His list of films making their world premieres includes “While We’re Young” (Ben Stiller, Naomi Watts), “Nightcrawler” (Jake Gyllenhaal), “St. Vincent” (Bill Murray, Melissa McCarthy), “Top Five” (Kevin Hart), “The Cobbler” (Adam Sandler), “Cake” (Jennifer Aniston), and “Miss Julie” (Jessica Chastain). Vulture

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