Jemaine Clement, Emanuel Michael and Stu Rutherford represented What We Do in the Shadows team at the Toronto International Film Festival. On Friday 12th September, Shadows had its Canadian premiere to the sold out crowd as part of the Midnight Madness programme.
Jemaine made an introduction to the film and after the screening him and Stu answered some questions from the audience.
The response was amazing. The official Midnight Madness blog was incredibly supportive and published plenty of posts inspired by What We Do in the Shadows vampires.
There has been a massive amount of positive buzz, but the best review I have found was by Robbie Brewi, a Film Fellow at TIFF 2014,
Jemaine Clement and Taika Waititi’s film, What We Do In The Shadows is the funniest film I’ve seen in a long time. It’s a rare thing to see a comedy that is relentless; an onslaught of jokes that pile one on top of the other, pummeling the audience into a state of comic submission. The film is a joke machine, pure and unconstrained. […]
I saw this movie as part of TIFF’s Midnight Madness series, and I was in a sour mood. I had been wandering around Toronto in the cold night for hours. I struggled to find a seat. The audience was loud and ornery, tossing balloons and honking air horns. I was tired, jet-lagged, ill and angry. The last thing I wanted to do was watch what I expected to be an interminably unfunny movie. But as soon as the film began, I started to laugh. And laugh. And laugh. At the end of the film, I felt transformed; I was so ebulliently happy, I couldn’t contain myself. I babbled on and on about the film to my friends, quoting lines, discussing shots, trying to process the comic gem I had just seen. I felt happy, full of life. This kind of transformative experience speaks to the power of movies to uplift, to change, to move people. The ability to experience a movie like What We Do In The Shadows is what makes an event like TIFF special, and is why we need to watch and treasure movies; to have ourselves be moved by something when we least expect it.
No wonder that two days after the premiere What We Do in the Shadows won the Grolsch People’s Choice Midnight Madness Award.
Watch Jemaine’s acceptance speech,
Further watch and read. Interviews with Jemaine and Stu while they were in Toronto:
> Midnight Madness: Interview: Jemaine Clement Acclaimed Documenatry Filmmaker Talks WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS with Robert A. Mitchell
> TIFF2014 Awards Banquet: Jemaine Clement saves the Vampires
> epn.tv: What Jemaine Clement Does in the Shadows
> Toronto Film Scene: Conchords and Creatures: Jemaine Clement and Stu Rutherford on ‘What We Do in the Shadows’ by William Brownridge
> The Canadian Press: ‘Flight of the Conchords’ star in vampire comedy ‘What We Do in the Shadows’ by Laura Kane
> MiNDFOOD: Interview with Jemaine Clement by Natasha Dragun
> Vulture: Jemaine Clement on His New Vampire Mockumentary, Winning Big at TIFF, and His New HBO Show by Anna Silman
> Digital Journal: ‘Flight of the Conchords’ star gets vampy in latest movie Special by Cate Kustanczy
> Fast Company: The (Almost) Real Life of Vampires: How Improv and Secrecy Resulted In A Bloody Funny Comedy by Rae Ann Fera
> KillPandaKill: The Bite’s On: What We Do In The ShadowsAn Interview with a New Zealand Vampire & his I.T Friend? (Jemaine Clement and Stu Rutherford) by Tina H., September 27, 2014
[EDIT: WWDitS Canadian release interviews published in February 2015 are in What We Do in the Shadows US & CAN release publicity]
CONGRATULATIONS! So good to see Shadows cleaning up audience awards at festivals.