Categories Print Media Review Run This Town

SXSW: Political Thriller ‘Run This Town’ Takes on Timely Issues – March 12, 2019

Damian Lewis in a Truly Striking Transformation

by Natalie Mokry | Austin360 | March 12, 2019

If there was ever a more relevant time for films to explore issues young millennials face in the workforce or the evolving questions about the role of politicians and the press, it’s now. “Run This Town” notably seizes on this but at times bites off a little more than it is willing to chew.

The film takes place in Toronto during the mayorship of Rob Ford, a real-life politician who created controversy and scandal during his time in office and whose substance abuse eventually led to the end of his position. Ford as a character, played by Damian Lewis in a truly striking transformation, takes a back seat in the film, which instead follows those in the orbit of his scandalous term, characters who are mostly fictionalized.

Bram (Ben Platt) is a young journalist who gets a job at a local paper, where his task is to write lists on trivial matters such as the city’s best burgers. He grows frustrated with the outlet’s lack of faith in him as a writer and the lack of opportunities it provides him to shine in what he feels is “real” journalism. So when he receives some possibly exclusive information about a scandalous video taken of Ford, he becomes determined to uncover the story with or without the help of his editor and his outlet and gain their recognition in the process.

Meanwhile, Kamal (Mena Massoud), a Ford staffer, is essentially in charge of deflecting the media narrative around Ford and covering up any inappropriate acts. A lawyer fresh out of school, Ashley (Nina Dobrev), works alongside him. Neither are respected by Ford, but they both desperately need the work for different reasons, so they stay. However, Ashley becomes uncomfortable with her job after experiencing firsthand the type of harassment Ford commits without reprimand or remorse, and she begins working toward a way to help expose the reality of who Ford is.

Continue reading SXSW: Political Thriller ‘Run This Town’ Takes on Timely Issues – March 12, 2019

Categories Print Media Review Run This Town

SXSW Review: Run This Town – March 12, 2019

Rob Ford Movie Run This Town is Funny, Furious and Surprisingly Accurate

by Radheyan Simonpillai | Now Toronto | March 10, 2019

The fictionalized take on the former mayor’s crack-smoking scandal mostly sticks to the details and is a reminder – in more ways than one – that white male privilege rules.

There are two stories running parallel in Run This Town. One is about a desperate journalist trying and failing to crack his first big story. The other revolves around the special aides in Rob Ford’s office, led by Mena Massoud’s disarmingly passionate smooth operator Kamal (who Lewis’s Ford keeps pronouncing “Camel”). Kamal tidies up the disasters left behind by his tornado boss and toys with journalists that try to get close to a story by giving spiels making them look like the taxpayer’s enemy.

The relevance a Rob Ford story has for a U.S. audience was obvious at the premiere in Austin. Torontonians were already familiar with Trump’s bombastic tactics and attitude toward the media and immigrants because we had it first, and we’re re-living the nightmare with Ford in office.

Continue reading SXSW Review: Run This Town – March 12, 2019

Categories Run This Town Video

Nina Dobrev Praises Damian as Rob Ford in Run This Town – March 10, 2019

SXSW Film Festival

by Gingersnap | damian-lewis.com | March 10, 2019

At the South by Southwest Film Festival in Austin, Toronto native Nina Dobrev shares why she is so proud of Run This Town and praises Damian Lewis for his portrayal of Rob Ford. Watch the video here.

Mena Massoud also gives insight into watching Damian transform into Rob Ford here.

Categories Behind the Scenes In Development/ Pre-Production Print Media Run This Town

Damian Lewis in Run This Town: A First Look – Nov 19, 2018

Ford Nation of Toronto

by Damianista | Fan Fun with Damian Lewis | November 19, 2018

Rob Ford was no ordinary mayor. He was regularly involved in controversy from 2010 to 2014 as he ran the city of Toronto. Ford was, in particular, repeatedly videotaped and photographed while intoxicated in public, culminating in his being recorded smoking crack cocaine as reported by the Kevin Donovan and Robyn Doolittle of the Toronto Star. The Star won the Michener Award, one of the highest distinctions in Canadian journalism, for the investigative journalism.

“The Toronto Star exposed Ford’s public drunkenness, boorish behavior, abuses of his office, and existence of a video of him smoking crack cocaine accompanied by members of drug gang. The Star did not waver as the mayor countered every story with vehement denials and attacks.”

And the police investigation the scandal triggered resulted in Ford losing most of his mayoral powers in a quite undignified way. Continue reading Damian Lewis in Run This Town: A First Look – Nov 19, 2018