2006 marked the 10th anniversary of the festival. Two special spotlights were presented, one on the emergence of a new wave of Russian genre cinema beginning with the screening of 1967 Russian classic classic Viy (presented by Russian film historian Alla Verlotsky) to contrast with the three new films: science fiction film Aziris Nuna directed by Oleg Kompasov, hosted by producer Sergei Frolov, the North American premiere of Shadowboxing directed by Alexei Sidorov and the North American premiere of the film JUNK hosted by director Denis Neimand and producer Joseph Bakshiev.
The other spotlight featured an impressive collection of UK films starting with the opening film of the festival The Descent directed by Neil Marshall. Also presented were Broken directed by Adam Mason and Simon Boyes, Evil Aliens directed by Jake West, the North American premiere of The Living and the Dead hosted by it’s director Simon Rumley, Isolation directed by Billy O’brien and Wilderness also hosted by it’s director Michael J. Bassett.
The festival hosted a mini spotlight of Stop Motion films with Lunacy from one of the masters in the genre, Czechoslovakian filmmaker Jan Svankmajer. Also presented were the Canadian premiere of Blood Tea and Red String directed by Christiane Cegavske and Worlds of Wounded Clay: The Films of Robert Morgan, hosted by Robert Morgan.
There is always an excellent selection of Asian films at Fantasia,with the Japanese offerings traditionally being the most voluminous. 2006 was no exception, withseveral films from renowned filmmakers. Director Shusuke Kaneko brought two films, Azumi 2: Love or Death and the North American premiere of God’s Left Hand, Devil’s Right Hand. Th festival presented The Great Yokai War from directorTakashi Miike, The Funky Forest by Katsuhito Ishii, Strange Circus hosted by its director Sion Sono, Synesthesia, hosted by director Toro Matsuura, The Glamorous Life of Sachiko Hanai directed by Mitsuru Meike, the North American premiere of The All‐Out Nine: Field of Nightmares by Yuichi Fukuda, Black Kiss by Makoto Tezka, Executive Koala by Minoru Kawasaki, Meatball Machine by Yudai Yamaguchi, Reincarnation by Takashi Shimizu, Shinobi by Shimoyama Ten, Tokyo Zombie by Sakichi Sato, Train Man by Masanori Murakami, Samurai Commando Mission 1549 by Masaaki Tezuka and Death Trance directed by Yuji Shimomura starring Tak Sakaguchi.
From Hong Kong the festival presented A Chinese Tall Story directed by Jeff Lau and Seven Swords by Tsui Hark. Also screened were two Shaw Brothers classics: Five Venoms directed by Chang Cheh and Dirty Ho by Chia‐Liang Liu. From South Korea A Bittersweet Life directed by Kim Ji‐Woon, Murder Take One by Jang Jin, Blood Rain by Kim Dae‐Seung, My Scary Girl by Son Jae‐ Gon, Princess Aurora by Bang Eun‐Jin, Red Shoes by Kim Yong‐Gyun, Vampire Cop Ricky by Lee Si‐Myung and The Art of Fighting directed by Shin Han‐Sol. Films from Thailand included Citizen Dog directed by Wisit Sasanatieng and the North American premiere of Re‐Cycle by the Pang Brothers, while from the Philipinnes came The Echo by Yam Laranas.
Our international selection included the North American premiere of Bad Blood from Portugal by directors Tiago Guedes and Frederico Serra, Behind The Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon hosted by it’s director Scott Glosserman, The world premiere of The Descendant hosted by it’s director Phillippe Spurrell, Edmond also hosted by director Stuart Gordon, Gravedancers from Mike Mendez, Ils from David Moreau, the International premiere of The Kovak Box by Daniel Mozon, Pusher 3 hosted by Nicolas Winding Refn, The Lost hosted by it’s director Chris Sivertson, The Canadian premiere of The Wild Blue Yonder by Werner Herzog, The Woods hosted by director Lucky Mc Kee, The world premiere of 39: A Film By Carroll Mc Kane hosted by director Gary Sherman, the Canadian premiere of Frostbite by Anders Banke, the Canadian premiere of The Visions of Jim Woodring hosted by comic book legend Jim Woodring and finally we presented a rare archival print of White of the Eye from Donald Cammell.
The closing film of the 2006 edition was the memorable world premiere of the homegrown feature film Bon Cop Bad Cop directed by Erik Canuel who also co‐wrote the film along with it’s main star Patrick Huard. They both hosted one of the most electric screenings of the festival’s history. The film went on to become one of Canada’s highest grossing films in history.