With a singular directorial approach, John Woo reinvented the conventions of action cinema, its visual language and dramatic codes. Nobody breaks down a sequence like Woo does: his staging is complex, his camera choreographies always elaborate, his mastery of physical performance and stunts unrivaled. His brilliantly original editing patterns are instantly recognizable, as are his slow-motion sequences, employed as much for pathos as to provide poignantly counter-adrenalized flourishes. At the heart of everything, Woo’s films are deeply moral visions, built around themes of friendship and trust with moving sincerity. Following martial arts films such as HAND OF DEATH(1976), LAST HURRAH FOR CHIVALRY (1979) and beloved comedies such as MONEY CRAZY (1977) and PLAIN JANE TO THE RESCUE (1982), Woo made his name with the groundbreaking heroic bloodshed of films such A BETTER TOMORROW(1986), THE KILLER (1989), BULLET IN THE HEAD (1990) and HARD BOILED(1992). Chow Yun-fat, Tony Leung and others became international stars under his watchful eye, and by crafting an action cinema—and a genre —of his own, Woo continues to astonish audiences and filmmakers alike, inspiring legions across the world. In the years following this era, Woo has worked alternately in both Hollywood and China, on further blockbuster classics such as HARD TARGET (1993), FACE/OFF(1997), MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE II (2000) and epics such as RED CLIFF I and II (2008, 2009), and THE CROSSING I and II (2014, 2015). He is currently hard at work on SILENT NIGHT, an upcoming return to American filmmaking, starring Joel Kinnaman and Kid Cudi. Fantasia is proud to honour John Woo's legacy.
All but unrivalled and entirely unsurpassed, John Woo’s 1992 action masterpiece explodes across the big screen once again!
Nicolas Cage and John Travolta switch faces in the unquestionable highlight of John Woo's Hollywood years.
Join us for a live artist talk with legendary Hong Kong filmmaker John Woo, recipient of this year’s Career Achievement Award.
THE YOUNG DRAGONS - 1974
LAST HURRAH FOR CHIVALRY - 1979
PLAIN JANE TO THE RESCUE - 1982
RUN TIGER RUN - 1984
A BETTER TOMORROW II - 1987
JUST HEROES - 1989
ONCE A THIEF - 1991
HARD TARGET - 1993
FACE/OFF - 1997
WINDTALKERS - 2002
RED CLIFF - 2008
THE CROSSING - 2014
MANHUNT - 2017
THE HAND OF DEATH – 1976
TO HELL WITH THE DEVIL – 1982
HEROES SHED NO TEARS - 1984
A BETTER TOMORROW - 1986
THE KILLER – 1989
BULLET IN THE HEAD - 1990
HARD BOILED - 1992
BROKEN ARROW – 1996
MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE II – 2000
PAYCHECK - 2003
RED CLIFF II - 2009
THE CROSSING 2- 2015
For her ground-breaking work as an author, filmmaker, historian and curator, Fantasia presents its 2022 Canadian Trailblazer Award to Kier-La Janisse, who has shifted the paradigm of genre film discourse and inspired a new generation of artists.
Over the last 23 years, Janisse founded the Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies, The CineMuerte Film Festival (1999-2005), The Big Smash! Music-on-Film Festival (2006), Plastic Paper: Winnipeg’s Festival of Animated, Illustrated and Puppet Film (2008-2011) and co-founded the beloved Montreal microcinema Blue Sunshine (2010-2012). She was the head programmer for the legendary Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in Austin, Texas, from 2003-2007 and an original programmer for Fantastic Fest, among work for organizations such as The Winnipeg Film Group, Pop Montreal and Monster Fest in Melbourne, Australia.
Janisse is the author of A Violent Professional: The Films of Luciano Rossi (2007) and the landmark film memoir House of Psychotic Women: An Autobiographical Topography of Female Neurosis in Horror and Exploitation Films (2012). The book World Premiered at Fantasia in 2012 and an expanded version will launch at the festival this summer, along with a special screening series (more below). Under the Spectacular Optical publishing imprint, Janisse has co-edited critical anthologies such as Satanic Panic: Pop-Cultural Paranoia in the 1980s (2015), Lost Girls: The Phantasmagorical Cinema of Jean Rollin (2017) and Yuletide Terror: Christmas Horror on Film and Television (2017). She is currently co-curating an anthology book on the films of Robert Downey, Sr., as well as writing a monograph about Monte Hellman’s COCKFIGHTER.
Born out of her extensive, award-winning work as a curator and disc producer for Severin Films, Janisse recently made her documentary debut with WOODLANDS DARK AND DAYS BEWITCHED: A HISTORY OF FOLK HORROR (2021). The film went on to win major prizes at SXSW, Fantasia, the Nashville Film Festival, Chattanooga and beyond.
That the above is only a partial overview of Janisse’s endeavours speaks volumes to her extraordinary accomplishments. She is a Canadian trailblazer in the truest sense.
A career-spanning discussion with author/filmmaker/curator/publisher Kier-La Janisse, recipient of our 2022 Canadian Trailblazer Award.
Active since the 1970s, Jean-Pierre Tadros is still present on all the red carpets, at all the festivals, and at all the events closely or remotely related to the seventh art and television. With camera in hand and a pencil behind his ear, he travels around Quebec and the world's major film festivals to report on the activities and excitement of the Quebec industry. For the record, he was the first journalist from a Quebec daily newspaper to cover the Cannes Film Festival (much to the dismay of Claude Ryan).
Jean-Pierre Tadros is the publisher, founder and editor-in-chief of the daily cinéTVvideo, now known as CTVM.info. Launched on September 18, 1989, this publication has become the first daily newsletter for Quebec professionals in the film, television and, today, digital-media industries. Initially distributed by fax, it’s now distributed daily by email, while its website remains an essential source of information thanks to Liliane Tremblay's meticulous and tireless work. And it is thanks to her essential contribution that CTVM.info can be found today on all platforms, reaching in real time the multiplicity of audiences interested in our image industries. For the past 33 years, CTVM.info has provided daily industry news to production and distribution companies, professional associations, government agencies, ministries, and Quebec audiovisual professionals. More than an information outlet, it tends to create a real sense of belonging in the industry and its various corridors.
Teacher, journalist, publisher, owner of a filmsetting workshop that counted among its clients La Vie en rose, CROC, Recherches amérindiennes... Tadros has touched on many aspects of the publishing world. With a bachelor's degree in mathematics and a master's degree in French literature, he was first a mathematics teacher before becoming a cultural journalist for the newspaper L'Orient (Beirut), then for Le Devoir and Le Jour. He founded the magazine Cinéma Québec and was co-director of Cinéma Canada and CinéMag with Constance Dilley. For several years he also published Ciné-Festival, the daily newspaper of the Montreal World Film Festival. He was the Quebec correspondent for Film Français and Variety. And he even gave courses on Quebec cinema, right here in the great auditorium of Concordia (then Sir George Williams). A loyal ally of the festival since its inception, Fantasia is proud to present Jean-Pierre Tadros with the Denis-Héroux Award in recognition of his exceptional contribution to the promotion of cinema and its industry.
A young man tries to stop a terrible radio station in this comedy influenced by science fiction, paranoid thrillers, and comic books.
For its 26th edition, Fantasia is proud to honour producer and director Pierre David. His 50-year career encompasses all aspects of film development, financing, production, and worldwide distribution. In 1969, he created a new independent distribution company, Les Films Mutuels. A few years later, David teamed up with Roger Corman and created New World Mutual Pictures of Canada. New World became the largest independent film distributor in Canada, handling films from New World Pictures, AVCO-Embassy, as well as European, American and Canadian acquisitions.
During his career, he established a close relationship with Jean-Claude Lord. In 1972, LES COLOMBES was his very first independent production, attracting over 350,000 viewers. BINGO (1974), their second collaboration, would attract over 500,000 spectators. He also developed a partnership with David Cronenberg, producing his cult films THE BROOD (1979), SCANNERS (1981) and VIDEODROME (1983). He moved to Los Angeles in 1983 and was responsible for the production of Oliver Stone's PLATOON (1986). In the spring of 1989, Pierre David and Frank Mancuso, Jr. produced the critically acclaimed box-office hit INTERNAL AFFAIRS for Paramount. Directed by Mike Figgis and starring Richard Gere and Andy Garcia, the film remains a favourite of its producer. In December 1989, David produced the sequel to SCANNERS directed by Christian Duguay, SCANNERS II: THE NEW ORDER. In 1993, he produced and directed SCANNER COP, restored earlier this year on Blu-ray by Vinegar Syndrome. Since his debut, David has produced or executive produced over 200 films and television series. The Fantasia Festival is therefore proud to present Pierre David with the Denis-Héroux Award in recognition of his exceptional contribution to the development of Quebec genre cinema.
One of the most popular Quebec films of its time, the first part of the late Jean-Claude Lord’s trilogy about the exploitation of the masses.
Roland Smith has always loved cinema. More than just a film buff, Roland has always been driven by a passion to share his favourites. If a film only exists if it is seen, he has made sure that we’ve see thousands of them during his long and fruitful career as a programmer and entrepreneur. His first screening room was the Verdi at 5380 Saint-Laurent, near Saint-Viateur, opened in December 1966. This theatre was mainly dedicated to combined programs of foreign films, Fellini, five or six Truffaut films in a row on the same day, but also Howard Hawks productions and many Quebec films. In January 1971, he saw in cinemascope and created a 1200-seat repertory cinema, l’Outremont.
The opening night was daring, to say the least, with a quadruple musical program: LET IT BE by Michael Lindsay-Hogg, MONTEREY POP by D.A. Pennebaker, À SOIR ON FAIT PEUR AU MONDE by Jean Dansereau and François Brault, and CE SOIR-LÀ GILLES VIGNEAULT by Arthur Lamothe. This was followed by a three-month cycle of spaghetti Westerns including a tribute to Sergio Leone and films by his colleagues, such as Sergio Sollima. An entrepreneur and eager to share his discoveries with Quebec, he was also responsible for the creation of the Cinéma Cartier in Quebec City and La Maison du Cinéma in Sherbrooke. Between 1971 and 1987, Theatre l’Outremont programmed more than 500 titles per year and was one of the most popular cinemas in the province. But Smith is also responsible for the mythical SuperClub Vidéotron branch on Mont-Royal Street and the resurrection of the Cinéma du Parc in 2006. Far from being retired, Smith is now at the head of the Montreal Latin American Film Festival, whose 11th edition will be held this summer from August 26 to September 5 at the Cinéma du Parc. This summer, the Fantasia Festival is proud to present the Denis-Héroux Award to Roland Smith for his exceptional contribution to the dissemination of the seventh art in Quebec.
An irreverent, subversive, and anti-establishment black comedy, a deeply humane love story, and a true repertory classic.