12 Years a Slave, the new film from director Steve McQueen which stars Chiwetel Ejiofor and Michael Fassbender, has won the People's Choice Award at the Toronto International Film Festival.
Set in 1840s America, 12 Years a Slave is based on the memoir of Solomon Northup (Ejiofor), a free man who was kidnapped and sold into slavery in Louisiana in 1841. Fassbender plays plantation owner Edwin Epps in the film, which opens on January 24, 2014.
The first runner-up in the Toronto People's Choice Award category was Stephen Frears' Philomena, which stars Judi Dench and Steve Coogan and is based on the true story of an Irishwoman searching for her lost son who she was forced to give up for adoption. Philomena opens on November 1.
The second runner-up was the Denis Villeneuve-directed thriller Prisoners, which stars Hugh Jackman and Jake Gyllenhaal. It opens on September 27.
Toronto International Film Festival Winners
People's Choice Award
Winner: 12 Years a Slave
First Runner-Up: Philomena
Second Runner-Up: Prisoners
Winner: The Square
First Runner-Up: Hi-Ho Mistahey!
Second Runner-Up: Beyond the Edge
Winner: Why Don't You Play in Hell?
First Runner-Up: Oculus
Second Runner-Up: Witching & Bitching
International Critics' Prize (Fipresci Prize)
Pawel Pawlikowski's Ida (Special Presentations category)
Claudia Sainte-Luce's The Amazing Catfish (Discovery Program)
Best Canadian Short Film
Best Canadian First Feature Film
Best Canadian Feature Film
When Jews Were Funny
NETPAC (Network for Promotion of Asian Cinema) Award