TJFF 2015 to spotlight Al Waxman

A Jewish Everyman

2015 Toronto Jewish Film Festival’s

Canadian Archival series to spotlight


Al Waxman TJFF
Left: Still from “The Winnings of Frankie Walls”, top right: Still from “King of Kensington”, bottom right: Still from “The Sun In My Eyes”. All courtesy of CBC Still Photo Collection

Including showings of “King of Kensington” episodes, 

and rarely-screened film and TV productions featuring some of his best performances.

TJFF runs April 30 – May 10, 2015

This year, the Toronto Jewish Film Festival (April 30 to May 10) continues its Canadian Archival series with free screenings of forgotten and little-seen film and television shows that revisit unexplored aspects of Canadian Jewish history and identity.

The 2015 edition of the Festival will spotlight the work of a Canadian TV, Film and Stage icon —Al Waxman, with a series that will include free screenings of three “King of Kensington” episodes, as well as other rarely-screened Canadian television and short film work featuring some of his best performances.

The actor’s Jewish working-class roots are a vital aspect of his screen presence. He brought to life characters who are bold blue-collar everymen, and often Jewish; they can be flawed and brash but are relatable, and allow for identification with other ethnic working class outsiders.

This year would have marked Al Waxman’s 80th birthday.

Waxman’s iconic role as Larry King on “King of Kensington”, and the show’s breakthrough depiction of Canadian multiculturalism is well known, but only a handful of episodes are publicly available. A selection of three episodes from the series that highlight the show’s populist sensibility—“Hot Line Host”, “Mr. King Goes to Ottawa” and “Diabolical Plots”—will be followed by a conversation with series creator Perry Rosemond, co-stars Rosemary Radcliffe and Jayne Eastwood, producer Joe Partington and Sara Waxman. Saturday May 2, 3:30 pm, Royal Ontario Museum.

Three other rarely-screened Canadian film and TV productions featuring Waxman will also be shown: The Dowry, a 1969 NFB short, where he plays a struggling Maritime fisherman; 1979’s The Winnings of Frankie Walls, one of his most-acclaimed performances where he plays the title character, a suddenly laid-off, middle-aged labourer; and The Sun in My Eyes—CBC’s 1960 TV drama based on Jack Kuper’s autobiographical play—where he plays a rebellious youth forced to confront the realities of life as a Jew in WWII Poland. Other guests attending the screenings include writer and filmmaker Jack Kuper, and director Peter Pearson  (The Dowry).

“As Canada’s largest Jewish Film Festival we feel that it is important to take a leading role in revisiting such film and TV work,” says TJFF Programme Director Stuart Hands. “We hope to introduce (or reintroduce) audiences to titles, filmmakers, and stars whose work has something to say about the particularities of Canadian Jewish identity.”

Al Waxman: A Jewish Everyman is co-presented with Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television.


The Toronto Jewish Film Festival presents the best feature films, documentaries and shorts from around the world, on themes of Jewish culture and identity.  The Festival is dedicated to using film for its contemporary popular value and accessibility, in order to reflect the Jewish experience internationally.  The TJFF provides an opportunity to heighten awareness of Jewish and cultural diversity, to audiences of all cultural backgrounds, and to present films in their original languages with subtitles, in an effort to break down racial, cultural and religious barriers and stereotypes.

Box office info:

Festival dates – April 30 – May 10, 2015

Full Festival Film Schedule available –online at as of Monday April 13

TJFF Box Office – 19 Madison Avenue

April 17 – May 10     12pm – 6pm

Cineplex Cinemas Empress Walk Advance Box Office

April 24 –  April 30     2pm – 6pm

TJFF Ticket Pricing:

$14.00 – Single Tickets

$9.00 – Matinee Screenings

$10 – Seniors/ Students

$20.00 – Opening Night

Main Number to Call is Festival Box Office: 416-324-9121