The race to the Oscars found a new leading contender for Best Picture in Steven Spielberg’s The Fabelmans.
Made as a semi-autobiographical account of his formative years as a young filmmaker, The Fabelmans won the TIFF People’s Choice Award on Sunday at the 2022 Toronto International Film Festival, awarding the final 10 Best Picture winners or nominees — including Nomadland, Green Bookand 12 years in prison — for the past 10 years.
Merie Weismiller Wallace/Universal Pictures and Amblin Entertainment Paul Dano and Michelle Williams in ‘The Fabelmans.’ by Steven Spielberg.
Daniel Radcliffe Weird: The Al Yankovic Story — directed by Eric Appel and also starring Evan Rachel Wood and Quinta Brunson — in this film The Fabelmans among the TIFF award winners, was awarded the TIFF People’s Choice Award in the Midnight Madness category.
Both films won the annual festival, which also carried the momentum for other potential Oscars contenders such as Brendan Fraser’s. The Great WhaleSam Mendes’ Empire of LightSarah Polley’s Women Talking (which finished as runner-up in the People’s Choice Award), Daniel Craig’s Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mysteryand Squid game directorial debut of star Lee Jung-jae Debt.
Ari + Louise Evan Rachel Wood, Eric Appel, and Daniel Radcliffe from ‘Weird: The Al Yankovic Story.’
In a press release issued after the film’s victory, Spielberg asked The Fabelmans “the most personal film” he has ever made, and praised the “warm reception from everyone in Toronto” the project received.
Speaking at The Fabelmans‘ premiered at TIFF alongside cast members Michelle Williams, Seth Rogen, Judd Hirsch, and Paul Dano, Spielberg told the audience that making the film was almost like a therapy session as he worked through its construction. .
“I thought, if I’m going to leave anything behind, what do I have to sort out and unpack about my mom, my dad, and my siblings?” he said, adding later: “For me, this film is a way to bring my mum and dad back. And it brought my sisters, Annie, Susie, and Nancy, closer to me than I thought I never could. even make the film.”
In an interview at the PEOPLE and EW TIFF studio, Radcliffe said he learned how to play the accordion for Weird, and that he could hold it up.
“I’m not good at the accordion, but I’ve come so far compared to where I started that it seems dumb to stop playing altogether,” he said. “I think I’m going to keep it up gradually over the years, and maybe one day I’ll be able to play a song with both hands at the same time.”
Universal will release The Fabelmans on November 11, and Weird: The Al Yankovic Story on November 4 on The Roku Channel. Watch PEOPLE and EW’s interview with cast and director Strange at TIFF above.
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