From Noel Murray's "Pre-Pre-TIFF" post at the Onion AV Club blog:
But one aspect of TIFF-going that I haven’t seen written about much—though veterans often talk about it amongst themselves—is the emotional rollercoaster of “announcement season.” From the moment Cannes ends, TIFF-goers start contemplating which of the most hotly buzzed Cannes titles will make it to Toronto. (Answer: Pretty much all of them.) And then we start watching the preliminary announcements from Venice and New York—the former because they often schedule must-see films that we didn’t previously know existed, and the latter because whatever gets pegged as the opening night NYFF film won’t be playing TIFF. (So no Wes Anderson’s The Darjeeling Limited for us in Toronto this year.)
I started 1st Thursday, in part, because by early-June I was already exchanging emails with several friends, doing exactly what Noel describes. One person I know tracks films from Cannes, Berlin, and Rotterdam in a spreadsheet and has already compiled an ordered list of the 100 films he's most eager to see, whether at TIFF or elsewhere. Another friend keeps a close eye on Variety, cutting and pasting snippets from reviews that catch his attention. (More than once I've seen a film simply because Robert Koehler happened to use words like "poetic" or "impressionist" in a positive note -- Munyurangabo, here I come.)
Last year, in a post called "Impossibly, Even Scarily, Geeky," I revealed my own strategy for choosing films. It involves Excel, the assigning of points based on peculiar and ever-evolving criteria, and some simple computations. This year I created my new file, tiff2007.xls, on June 27, soon after TIFF announced its first large batch of confirmed titles. And now, like Noel, I make frequent detours to the Media Centre, eagerly anticipating each new release.