TORONTO — Piers Handling, Director and CEO of TIFF, and Cameron Bailey, Artistic Director of TIFF, salute veteran programmer Colin Geddes as he departs the organization to pursue new exciting opportunities. Geddes, an international programmer of TIFF’s cutting edge Midnight Madness and Vanguard programmes, is leaving after 20 years with the Toronto International Film Festival.
Geddes began his career at TIFF in 1997, when he was brought on by Midnight Madness founder Noah Cowan to co-program the selection. He took over Midnight Madness the following year and has shepherded it through two decades of incredible growth.
“Colin embodied a wicked and savvy eye for what’s at the cutting edge of fun, eye-popping horror, and way-out-there, in-your-face, genre-bending movies that were not always in good taste — and we loved him for it,” said Piers Handling. “He put his indelible stamp on Midnight Madness, corralling the programme and its wonderfully insane audiences for 20 years.”
“Colin raised a whole generation on the thrills, shocks, and laughs of Midnight Madness,” said Cameron Bailey. “Toronto audiences came to know and love his passion for movies, his knowledge and his celebrated red trousers. We’re grateful for everything he’s contributed to the TIFF experience, and glad to know he’s built a strong Midnight legacy that will continue to grow.”
“When I started at TIFF in 1997, I had no idea it would be a journey that would last two decades,” said Colin Geddes. “I’m very proud of the work we have done and of the growth of Midnight Madness during those years. What began as a fun sidebar for wild and provocative films has turned into one of the most respected genre selections in the world. I’m also very proud of the smart, dedicated and diverse audience for growing with me, being brave and risking sleep deprivation year after year to see these films.”
During his time at TIFF, Geddes programmed many notable world premieres and introduced a wide array of talent and works to the world stage including Miike Takashi (Ichi The Killer), Eli Roth (Cabin Fever, Hostel), Pratchya Pinkaew and Tony Jaa (Ong Bak: Muay Thai Warrior), Alex Aja (High Tension, Horns), James Wan (Saw, Insidious), Adam Wingard (You’re Next), Gareth Evans (The Raid: Redemption), Donnie Yen (SPL, Flash Point), Johnnie To (The Mission, Full Time Killer), Karyn Kusama (Jennifer’s Body), Osgood Perkins (February, I Am The Pretty Thing That Lives in the House), Ben Wheatley (Kill List, Free Fire) and many more.
“My career at TIFF has been filled with incredible opportunities and successes, and I will always love introducing films to new audiences”, Geddes added. “Sitting in a full cinema while an audience is awed by a great film for the first time will always be one of my favourite feelings. Now after 20 years with TIFF, it is time to move on to the next chapter of my life and career.”
Geddes passes the TIFF baton to his programming associate and Midnight Madness protégé Peter Kuplowsky. He will continue his work as Curator for the horror streaming service Shudder, and with his wife Katarina Gligorijević in their role as Artistic Directors for the historic Royal Cinema in Toronto.
The 42nd Toronto International Film Festival runs September 7 to 17, 2017