Monday, August 27, 2007

VISA Screening Room Tickets and Passes

Someone in the comments wondered if there'd be any VISA Screening Room tickets left given that individual tickets went on sale before the advanced ticketing occurred. I wrote to the festival, and got this reply:

The tickets we made available for public sales comes out of a separate inventory - it doesn't affect pass and ticket package holders.... but your access to these tickets will still be determined by both your position in the lottery for the advance order procedure and the demand on said tickets.

You may select any screenings except for anything playing at Roy Thomson Hall.

So the festival does reserve separate blocks of tickets for individual sales and for advanced ticketing. So if you have a festival pass, a daytime pass, or a 10-film package, you can still select VISA Screening Room films or the showings of gala films that are *not* at Roy Thomson Hall in the advanced ticketing process.

Thanks to the festival for their extremely quick reply to this question (someone was actually checking e-mail on Sunday night!).


Is there any advantage, then, in planning to buy VISA screening tickets using the festival pass? I don't have a pass, but was able to get tickets yesterday to every VISA screening I wanted. Of course, I had to pay gala prices and I am assuming they would have been less costly using the pass.

It would seem to me that it would be better to buy "must see" VISA screening tickets the day they go on sale to the general public, because if your lottery position turns out to be unfavorable, you may never get the chance.

The tickets for both VISA screenings of Then She Found Me, for example, that were allocated to yesterday's sale are sold out. Those tickets, I believe, were bought in large part by the fans of Colin Firth, who has an extremely devoted following (myself among them). If I had bought a festival pass and planned on using it to get those tickets, I would be sweating it out now, particularly because I am traveling from NY and my travel arrangements are already made. Why don't they allow pass holders to buy first, so that if they DON'T get their first choices, they would then have the option of participating in the later (albeit more expensive)allocation to the general public.

This is the first year they've put VISA Screening Room tickets on sale before the advanced ticket lottery (not sure why they did that this year), so it'll be interesting to see how everything works out. I'd agree that even with the pass or the 10-ticket books, it would be better to buy the individual tickets beforehand if there was something you really wanted to see, since there's no guarantee where in the lottery your order will land and how fast the allotted tickets will get consumed.

"This is the first year they've put VISA Screening Room tickets on sale before the advanced ticket lottery (not sure why they did that this year)"

The only reason I can think of is that they wanted to get gala prices from as many of us as they could before putting the remaining tickets out there at regular screening prices!

Thanks for emailing the Festival for this important clarification. I assumed that the Visa screenings wouldn't be available anymore to pass/coupon holders.

I was tempted to start buying some of the advance tickets to these shows, until I saw how much they cost ($37.50 before taxes and fees). Still smarting from the lack of a 30-coupon book...

My experiences at the Toronto International Film Festival. Note this blog is not affiliated with the Toronto International Film Festival Group or the festival itself.
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