USA TODAY US Edition
Focus is on cover-ups and covering up
TORONTO A bright Spotlight just turned on for awards season.
Director Tom McCarthy’s drama (in theaters Nov. 6) chronicling a Pulitzer Prize-winning
Boston Globe investigation into clergy sex abuse won a great reception Monday night at Toronto International Film Festival. However, instead of the A-list stars, it was the appearance of the real-life journalists that garnered a standing ovation from the premiere crowd at the Princess of Wales Theatre.
“They’re our heroes,” McCarthy said in a post-screening Q&A session. “They don’t do the kind of work where they get up on stages and walk press lines and take a lot of pictures. They do it quietly and courageously and relentlessly.”
Led by its investigative team of Robby Robinson (Michael Keaton), Mike Rezendes (Mark Ruffalo), Sacha Pfeiffer (Rachel McAdams) and Matt Carroll (Brian d’Arcy James), the Globe dug up everything they could on the Catholic Church covering up child molestations by several Boston priests, even though it meant potentially upsetting government officials and their subscriber base.
The journalists were key for the actors in finding their characters and researching the scandal. Ruffalo is a great actor, “but I didn’t know he was a great reporter,” Rezendes said. “The guy learned more about me than I ever wanted to tell him.”
Ruffalo thanked the journalists for their honesty and courage.
“We’re just actors, but this is your life,” he said. “As much accolades as we get here for doing this, it’s really you who have ... given a voice to people who didn’t have a voice before at all.”
CUT FROM THE SAME CLOTH
In the case of The Dressmaker, those clothes do make the woman.
Building Tilly Dunnage’s fashionable wardrobe was quite a project, says Kate Winslet, who stars as a Paris-trained dressmaker in the movie, which premiered Monday at the festival. Tilly returns home to rural Australia to take care of her ailing mother (Judy Davis) and dole out a comeuppance to those who drove her from town when she was younger.
Filmmakers hired a second costume designer, Margot Wilson, just to do Winslet’s attire.
The clothes had to be as functional as possible. “The outfits Tilly wears are largely not practical at all, and had to function in pretty harsh conditions — sometimes being really quite physical in those outfits,” the actress says.
“The biggest challenge we had was not ripping things. There was crisis stitching and fixing that would go on on set, but when you put someone in couture clothes in the middle of the Outback, something ’s going to get dust and crap on it.”