One of the most prestigious and well-known film festivals in the world, Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) has been running in the city since 1976. It takes place at the beginning of September, beginning on the Thursday after Labour Day, and runs for ten days. The festival founders were William Marshall, Henk van der Kolk and Dusty Cohl. TIFF's current Artistic Director is Cameron Bailey.
Toronto International Film Festival is much beloved by movie lovers and industry professionals due to its focus on non-competitive showcase of the best in cinema from around the world. TIFF lacks a jury, and its main award is voted on by the festival-attending public. Due to many worldwide and North American premieres taking place at TIFF, the festival is also notable for its ability to generate "Oscar buzz".
The festival screens over 300 films from around the world every year, with special programs focusing on Canadian cinema, the best in horror, adventure and fantasy (the very popular "Midnight Madness" program), Wavelength collections of short films, films for children and family audiences, documentaries, special presentations and galas. TIFF makes itself very accessible to the public: single screening tickets are readily available and affordable ($24 in 2014). Furthermore, several TIFF package options sold before the festival facilitate purchase of red carpet screenings and films that are expected to sell out (many films most often do).
TIFF is covered extensively by major newspapers and entertainment channels in Canada and the U.S. Film premieres, red carpet events and prestigious parties attract many celebrities and movie stars to Toronto, and TIFF is notoriously great for "star gazing".