Ponty Up Pictures

July 17, 2008 14:19 ET

Director Bruce Mcdonald Is Red Mad at Toronto International Film Festival

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - July 17, 2008) - Just two days after festival organizers announced that legendary Director Bruce McDonald's new film "Pontypool" would have its World Premiere at this year's Toronto International Film Festival in September, buzz quickly spread that the famed Director had gone "Red" and Hollywood is taking notice.

"Pontypool", a psychological thriller starring character actor Stephen McHattie, ("300", "Seinfeld" and who stars as Night Owl in Warner Bros. upcoming DC Comics "The Watchmen"), is the first full length Canadian feature film to be shot entirely using the new Red One 4k HD Camera and will be the first "Red" feature to ever screen at the fest.

The Red One Camera has been the centre of many heated industry debates as the leading technology that will quickly replace traditional 35mm film-making. No film or tape stock is required at all. Footage is instantly saved on a digital memory card.

"It wasn't an easy decision for Bruce" says Producer Jeffrey Coghlan, "we conducted Red and 35mm comparison tests prior to shooting and we literally couldn't tell the difference". Coghlan, praises Cinematographer Miroslaw Baszak ("Shake Hands With The Devil", "Land Of The Dead"), with his uncompromised vision for making the film look so good and Red Lab Toronto for ensuring a smooth and easy workflow.

"Pontypool", which was shot using 100% private funds, a rarity for most films, wrapped production just 5 weeks ago and has quickly become one of the most talked about and anticipated films of this year's fest.

McDonald can't wait to unveil the film at "his favorite, the best and most important film festival in the world". Hollywood can't wait either. The Toronto International Film Festival is famous for supporting independent filmmakers and is often where distributors acquire new titles to release. "Suddenly everyone is calling," says Coghlan, "from the mini distribs to a couple of major studios." When asked why, Coghlan responded "It's a real mind-blower. A scary, intelligent thriller and a real departure for Bruce who certainly delivers."

Director Bruce McDonald's other credits include last year's "The Tracey Fragments" starring Ellen Page, "Picture Claire" and "Hard Core Logo".

Visual Effects for "Pontypool" are being done by leading special effects house Mr. X whose recent credits include the upcoming Tom Cruise produced "Death Race", "Resident Evil", "Silent Hill" and the 2004 "Dawn of the Dead" remake.

"Pontypool" is about a feisty, washed-up radio host (McHattie) who now takes the only job he can get, broadcasting from the basement of a church in the small town of Pontypool. Things suddenly go awry when reports of people developing strange speech patterns and evoking horrendous acts of violence start piling in due to a virus quickly taking over the town. It was written by Tony Burgess and adapted from his novel "Pontypool Changes Everything". Producers are Jeffrey Coghlan and Ambrose Roche. Executive Producers are Henry Cole, J. Miles Dale and Jasper Graham.

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