Aftersun Leads 26th Annual TFCA Awards Winners

January 8, 2023

Aftersun | Sphere Films

Charlotte Wells’ Aftersun took four top awards from the Toronto Film Critics Association, in a crowded field of favourites that included The Daniels’ Everything Everywhere All at Once and Sarah Polley’s Women Talking.

Aftersun, A film with themes of memory, regrets and love, set during a bonding father-daughter resort vacation, took honours for Best Picture, Best First Feature, Best Director for Wells and Best Actor for Paul Mescal.

Meanwhile, though The Daniels’ Everything Everywhere All at Once and Sarah Polley’s Women Talking dominated nominations with five and four respectively, they produced one win between them. Everything Everywhere All at Once’s Ke Huy Quan earned a Best Supporting Actor win.

Cate Blanchett was named Best Actress for Tár, Todd Field’s psychological drama about a charismatic, world-famous orchestra conductor whose manipulative and controlling behavior leads to her personal and professional downfall. And Keke Palmer won Best Supporting Actress for her role in Jordan Peele’s Nope.

The Banshees of Inisherin, Martin McDonagh’s film set on a quiet island during the 1920s Irish Civil war, won Best Screenplay, Original or Adapted. The film stars Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson as two longtime friends whose relationship is severed for no obvious reason.

Best International Film went to Saint Omer, Alice Diop’s Medea-themed legal drama about a Senegalese woman accused of murdering her toddler.

The city itself took the spotlight with a Best Animated Film award for Pixar’s Turning Red, directed by Toronto’s Domee Shi. Shi set her teen coming-of-age movie in her hometown.

And the Allan King Documentary Film Award went to All the Beauty and the Bloodshed, directed by Laura Poitras. It follows the artist Nan Goldin, a powerful activist against the Sackler family, whose pharmaceutical company is considered a major spreader of the opioid epidemic, and it traces her life and experience from bohemian New York artist to fame, addiction and activism.

The awards were voted by TFCA members at a meeting on Sunday, January 8, 2023. The membership has also chosen the three finalists for the Rogers Best Canadian Film Award: Brother, directed by Clement Virgo, David Cronenberg’s Crimes of the Future, and Riceboy Sleeps, directed by Anthony Shim.

The winner of the Rogers Best Canadian Film Award will be named at the 26th TFCA awards gala, to be held in Toronto at the Omni King Edward Hotel on March 6. The honour carries a record-setting $100,000 cash prize, the richest film award in the country, courtesy of Rogers. The runners-up will each receive $5,000.

“The Toronto Film Critics Association vote is often a nail-biter, but this year’s results were as close as they come,” said TFCA president Johanna Schneller.

“In most categories, only a few votes separated our top three candidates. Our eleven winners came from eight different films, and excitingly, for the first time, the majority of those were films directed by women: Laura Poitras for All the Beauty and the Bloodshed, Domee Shi for Turning Red, Alice Diop for Saint Omer, and a major sweep for Aftersun’s Charlotte Wells.“One thing we all agree on: The intimate, layered Aftersun is the debut of a thrilling new talent.”

Yet to be announced are the 2022 recipients of the Company 3 TFCA Luminary Award and the Stella Artois Jay Scott Prize for an emerging artist. A pay-it-forward award, the Company 3 TFCA Luminary Award winner will choose a filmmaker to be the recipient of $50,000 worth of services. The winner of the Stella Artois Jay Scott Prize for an emerging artist will be presented with a $10,000 cheque at the gala.

The TFCA is extremely grateful to founding sponsor Rogers Communications for the Rogers Best Canadian Film, to returning sponsors Labatt for the Stella Artois Jay Scott Prize for an emerging artist, to Netflix as the Dinner sponsor, to Air Canada as Official Airline and to Company 3 as the Company 3 Luminary Award sponsor. The TFCA welcomes new sponsor Universal Pictures Canada as the Cocktail Reception sponsor, Prime Video as the Prime Video After Party sponsor, Telefilm Canada as the Telefilm Canada Emerging Critic sponsor and Cineplex Entertainment.  The TFCA also thanks sponsors Omni King Edward Hotel and salutes stalwart supporters, G.H. Mumm Champagne, L’Eat Catering, Zoomer Magazine, Pinnacle, Chairman Mills and The Printing House.


The full list of 26th annual TFCA Awards winners and runners-up is as follows:


Best Picture

Aftersun (Sphere Films)
Runners-up: Everything Everywhere All at Once (Elevation Pictures), Women Talking (Universal Picture Canada)

Best Director

Charlotte Wells – Aftersun (Sphere Films)

Runners-up: Daniels, Everything Everywhere All at Once (Elevation Pictures); Sarah Polley, Women Talking (Universal Pictures Canada)

Best Screenplay, Adapted or Original

The Banshees of Inisherin – Martin McDonagh (Searchlight Pictures)

Runners-up: Todd Field, Tár (Universal Pictures Canada); Sarah Polley, Women Talking (Universal Picturs Canada)

Best Actress

Cate Blanchett in Tár (Universal Pictures Canada)

Runners-up: Danielle Deadwyler in Till (Universal Pictures Canada); Michelle Yeoh in Everything Everywhere All at Once (Elevation Pictures)

Best Actor

Paul Mescal in Aftersun (Sphere Films)

Runners-up: Colin Farrell in The Banshees of Inisherin (Searchlight Pictures); Brendan Fraser in The Whale (Elevation Pictures)

Best Supporting Actress

Keke Palmer in Nope (Universal Pictures Canada)

Runners-up: Jessie Buckley in Women Talking (Universal Pictures Canada); Stephanie Hsu in Everything Everywhere All at Once (Elevation Pictures)

Best Supporting Actor

Ke Huy Quan in Everything Everywhere All at Once (Elevation Pictures)

Runners-up: Brendan Gleeson in The Banshees of Inisherin (Searchlight Pictures); Barry Keoghan in The Banshees of Inisherin (Searchlight Pictures)

Best Animated Feature

Turning Red, directed by Domee Shi (Walt Disney Pictures Canada)

Runners-up: Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio (Netflix); Marcel the Shell with Shoes on (Elevation Pictures)

Allan King Documentary Award

All the Beauty and the Bloodshed, directed by Laura Poitras (Elevation Pictures)

Runners-up: Fire of Love (Mongrel Media); Moonage Daydream (Elevation Pictures)

Best International Feature

Saint Omer, directed by Alice Diop (Films We Like)

Runners-up: Decision to Leave (Mongrel Media); EO (Films We Like)

Best First Feature

Aftersun, directed by Charlotte Wells (Sphere Films)

Runners-up: Marcel the Shell with Shoes on (Elevation Pictures); Turning Red (Walt Disney Pictures Canada)

Rogers Best Canadian Film Nominees

Brother, directed by Clement Virgo (Elevation Pictures)

Crimes of the Future, directed by David Cronenberg (Sphere Films)

Riceboy Sleeps, directed by Anthony Shim (Game Theory Films)

Special Citation
To Iranian filmmakers Jafar Panahi, Mohammad Rasoulof and Mostafa Al-Ahmad, who are currently in jail in Ira yet continue to make subtle movies that talk about life in their country, in spite of threats and restrictions from the regime. We stand in solidarity with them and add our voices to the international arts community calling for their release.