King Street on the afternoon of the day TIFF opened, Thursday, September 5, 2014. The crowds had not yet gathered.


King Street gazing west at John Street, on the evening of September 6, 2014. The crowds had certainly arrived.


              King Street gazing east on Sunday afternoon, September 7, 2014

The closing of King Street to vehicle traffic for four days during TIFF 2014, allowed Torontonians to discover the possibilities when streets are open to pedestrians only. When we consider how many people are living in the core of the city, the surrounding suburbs, and the number of tourists visiting from around the world, it is a pity that our streets are so rarely open for strolling and relaxation. Because we live at a latitude that possesses short summers, the tragedy of this situation is compounded.

More and more people are now purchasing homes in areas throughout the metro area where they no longer require a car, in districts close to the subways or streetcar lines. Throughout the years, TIFF has constantly strived to showcase Toronto to the world. The closing of the street in front of the Bell Lightbox is a further extension of this concept. During TIFF, to stroll along King Street, especially at night, has always been a unique experience, but this year, it was doubly true. King Street looked great! It is a pity that the street was closed to vehicles for only four days.

I faithfully attend TIFF each year. I usually do not attend the Hollywood premiers, but prefer to view foreign films and relatively unknown movies that I would otherwise not have an opportunity to see, including many Canadian films. I particularly enjoy the discussions with the actors, producers and directors that follow the screenings. I consider TIFF one of the most important events of my year.

When the festival is not in operation, I continue to attend the Bell Lightbox to view some of the classics of yesteryears, particularly those that I remember from the days of my youth when I attended Toronto’s old historic movie venues. It is great to view them on the big screen as they were originally intended to be seen.

The Bell Lightbox has become an integral part of my entertainment world.


              Cafes in front of the the Bell Lightbox on King Street West.


A cafe/restaurant awaits the evening’s customer who wish to take in the sights of TIFF 


The Princess of Wales Theatre prepares for the premier of the film “The Equalizer.”


The stage on the reflecting pool on the north side of the Roy Thomson Hall, where a sound system and DJ played music for the guests on the terrace of the hall.


Picnic tables on King Street to the west of Simcoe Street, the 1908 Union Building in the background.


Restaurant patios directly opposite the entrance to the Bell Lightbox.


               Giant chess board on King Street during TIFF 2014.


                 Crowds in front of the Princess of Wales Theatre


           The Roy Thomson Hall at King and Simcoe during TIFF 2014 


Concert stage on the north side of King Street, between Peter and John Streets


            La Fenice Restaurant on the north side of King Street


                 The red carpet in the Bell Lightbox, TIFF, 2014


                  Scotiabank Theatres, one of the venues for TIFF


To view the Home Page for this blog: https://tayloronhistory.com/

To view previous blogs about Toronto’s old movie houses and modern cinemas


To view links to Toronto’s Heritage Buildings


Recent publication entitled “Toronto’s Theatres and the Golden Age of the Silver Screen,” by the author of this blog. The publication explores 50 of Toronto’s old theatres and contains over 80 archival photographs of the facades, marquees and interiors of the theatres. It also relates anecdotes and stories from those who experienced these grand old movie houses.


                 To place an order for this book:

https://www.historypress.net/catalogue/bookstore/books/Toronto-Theatres-and-the-Golden-Age-of-the-Silver-Screen/9781626194502 .

The closing section of the book is about the Bell Lightbox, one of the best of the city’s modern theatre venues. The book is available at Chapters/Indigo and the book store in the Bell Lightbox. It will also be featured during “Word on the Street” on September 21st.    

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One thought on “TIFF madness 2014—King St. festival

  1. Hi Doug,
    I am contacting you on behalf of a media production house and the Toronto Entertainment District. I was wondering if I could have permission to use a handful of your photos for some promotional items for the Toronto Entertainment District. Please contact me back at your earliest convenience.


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