The Whistler Film Festival has unveiled the 85 films that will screen during the event from Nov. 28 until Dec. 2.
This year, organizers received 1,000 submissions and had to whittle the list down to 50 features and 35 shorts, which represent 12 countries.
The selection includes 69 per cent Canadian content and features 46 per cent female-directed films, more than ever before, organizers said in a release. On top of that, juries featuring top industry talent will hand out 14 awards for a total of $146,500 in cash and prizes ($31,500 cash and $115,000 in prizes).
Set to open the festival this year on Nov. 28 is Josie Rourke's Mary Queen of Scots, starring Oscar-nominated actresses, Saoirse Ronan and Margot Robbie.
On the other end closing out the festival will be the Canadian premiere of the surf documentary, Momentum Generation, directed by Jeff and Michael Zimbalist.
The festival will also present the Canadian premieres of award-season contenders, including On the Basis of Sex and Stockholm. Western Canadian premieres include At Eternity's Gate, If Beale Street Could Talk, Romaand Family First.
"It is gratifying to note that the Whistler Film Festival continues to improve on the quality of its film offerings at the same time that it is growing its representation of female-directed movies," said Paul Gratton, director of programming for the festival, in a release. "It is not just at the first-time features end of the spectrum that female directors continue to shine at Whistler, many of our top titles are directed by women. The quality of our Canadian submissions are the best ever, with major directors such as Bruce McDonald, Brigitte Berman, Maxime Giroux, Gary Burns, Sébastien Pilote and Robert Budreau entrusting us with their latest films. The Borsos jury will have a particularly challenging time picking the winners this year."
The festival's online box office is open for VIP patron passes, industry passes, ticket packages and event tickets at whistlerfilmfestival.com/tickets/. Single film tickets go on sale on Nov. 15. For more information, or to see the full lineup, visit whistlerfilmfestival.com.