And, so, another festival draws to a close. Yesterday, TIFF handed out its trophies for 2012, and you can read about all the winners here. Much to my surprise – and, seemingly, the genuine shock of many a TIFFgoer – the Audience Award was claimed by David O. Russell’s The Silver Linings Playbook, a film I’d only heard mediocre things about all week from assorted people in line. How did this out-of-left-field win happen?
As regular readers of The ‘Pie know, I remain highly skeptical of the Audience Award and the voting process. Since the festival never ever explains HOW they calculate the winning film – is it the biggest vote-getter? if so, wouldn’t that gives an advantage to big-ticket films (like The Silver Linings Playbook) that screen in larger venues and, therefore, have a much bigger voting pool than the obscure foreign films that play to much smaller audiences? and what if a studio fills half a theater with staff and flunkies, who’ll vote in their own film’s favor? – I’m convinced the whole thing is somehow rigged.
It doesn’t help my admittedly unproven conspiracy theory that this is the third Weinstein Company film in the past four years to walk away with the prize. Coincidence? Maybe.