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College Humour Comes to Toronto Courtesy of TIFF’s “Toga” Series

John Landis's Animal House laid the foundation for a generation of films inspired by college humour and attitudes (photo: Photofest)

John Landis’s Animal House laid the foundation for a generation of films inspired by college humour and attitudes (photo: Photofest)

JULY 17 TO AUGUST 29  School may be out for summer, but you can still take a course in college humour! Beginning this week, TIFF’s learned programmers present a full schedule of movies and events looking at how a generation of filmmakers combined crass hilarity, a rock ‘n’ roll attitude and a celebration of prodigious underachievement to create some of the most memorable comedies of the past 50 years. Taking National Lampoon’s Animal House as its touchstone, TIFF’s series, Toga! the Reinvention of American Comedy, traces a line from that film—John Landis’s 1978 masterclass in college humour that made John Belushi a household name—through the likes of Ghostbusters and Revenge of the Nerds, and finally to contemporary fare such as Old School, Superbad and The Hangover, in an examination of how frat house follies came to dominate the silver screen.

A number of special events are planned as part of the series’s opening week, including conversations with Ivan and Jason Reitman (July 17), an Animal House reunion featuring director Landis, Ivan Reitman and members of the cast, followed by a screening of the film (July 18), and a further appearance by Landis (July 20), during which he’ll discuss his four-decade career and work with many of the 20th century’s greatest comedic talents. TIFF Bell Lightbox, single tickets $12 (more for special events); call 416-599-8433 or visit tiff.net for a full schedule and more information.  —Craig Moy

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