If you’ve been following Collider closely over the last couple of weeks, you’ve no doubt noticed our copious amounts of coverage from the 2016 Toronto International Film Festival. Each year, the fest plays host to some of the year’s biggest films, but can also be a launching pad for surprises like Slumdog Millionaire or Silver Linings Playbook. TIFF has become a staple of the awards season, serving as a kick-off of sorts where critics and industry folks get to preview the films that may be in the running later in the year. And 2016 was no different.
This year, a number of films leapt out from the fest, announcing themselves as serious contenders in various awards categories. And others fell flat, as the landscape ahead became clearer. While we’re still a long ways off from handicapping the Oscar race in earnest, the chess board has now been previewed, so to speak, and as such there are some necessary observations to be made. Below, I’ve compiled a list of some of the biggest things we learned from the festival about the awards race ahead.