Canadian Director Andrew Cividino presents the world premiere of We Ate the Children Last as part of TIFF’s prestigious Short Cuts Canada Program
Toronto – September 6, 2011
We Ate the Children Last, written and directed by filmmaker Andrew Cividino, is an apocalyptic tale of medical misadventure based on a short story of the same name by Yann Martel, the Booker Prize-winning Canadian author of Life of Pi. The 13-minute short premieres as part of the Toronto International Film Festival’s prestigious Short Cuts Canada program at TIFF Bell Lightbox on September 14, 2011 at 5:30 p.m. and September 15, 2011 at 1 p.m.
After graduating with a BFA in film studies from Ryerson University’s School of Image Arts, Cividino created an award‐winning public service announcement in 2006 for the Ontario Film Review Board winning the TIFF /Motorola Motoreel Competition and Motorola’s Filmmaker of the Year.
In 2007, he founded Film Forge Productions and has produced and directed films with the support of the National Film Board of Canada and Bravo! We Ate the Children Last is the third short by Cividino whose other films include Norbert (2007) and Mud (2009).
Cividino’s vision for We Ate the Children Last was to present an effective satire of mass media-induced hysteria and human fallibility. The quick-thinking writer was able to quickly revise the screenplay when filming during the midst of the G20 Summit in Toronto last year. Cividino used riot scenes from the Summit to capture badly needed footage for the sci-fi horror movie, footage they otherwise couldn’t have afforded with their modest $30,000 budget.
The scenes of mayhem on the Toronto streets illustrated the social upheaval caused by the movie’s nightmare scenario: When a radical procedure called “Porsicure,” which transplants pig organs to cure cancer, turns into a tragic mistake. The human recipients of porcine organ, identified by angry red surgery scars on their chests, resort to eating garbage and then people, causing social disorder and global terror.
They planned to just shoot a few crowd scenes, mingling the film’s actors amidst unsuspecting regular citizens, but Cividino and his crew ended up in the middle of the downtown uprising, including the infamous Black Bloc looting and burning spree.
The crew members all inhaled tear gas and talcum powder and were smacked by police riot shields. Geoff Smart, the film’s associate director and co-screenwriter, had his arm singed by the exploding gas tank of one of the burning cop cars.
“It was worth all the effort,” Cividino says. “A few of us were singed, tear gassed, and butted over by riot shields — you don’t realize how close the police line is when you’re looking through the lens — but we got some incredible footage that feels like an authentic part of our film world.” The final editing revealed images that truly captured the dystopic world that Cividino envisioned.
Produced by Josh Clavir, Jonathan Hodgson, Karen Harnisch, Film Forge Productions, and with the support of BravoFACT Foundation, We Ate the Children Last is a thought-provoking and provocative film worthy of a TIFF debut.
Cividino lives and works in Toronto where he is currently developing his first feature-length film.
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