Hollywood Elsewhere is shocked and saddened to hear that Toronto Star film critic and cinematic wise man Peter Howell has taken a buyout and that henceforth “there is literally no entertainment department at the Toronto Star”, according to a Facebook post from Star columnist Rob Salem.

How could the Toronto Star cut loose one of its finest and best known name-brand writers? How could they not at least be interested in continuing to post Howell’s reviews and whatnot on a freelance contributor basis? In my mind Howell IS the Toronto Star.

Here’s hoping/presuming that he’ll continue to file for the Star as an indie contributor or at least for some other prominent publilcaton, and that he’ll be making the trek to Cannes in May and so forth.