I’d heard during Cannes that the Toronto Film Festival was going to back away from last year’s get-tough-with-Telluride policy, and now the change is confirmed with The Hollywood Reporter‘s Scott Feinberg reporting that “in a major reversal” Toronto has more or less folded that tent. Last year’s Toronto policy stipulated that hot-ticket films which had premiered at the smallish but influential Telluride Film Festival, which always happens over Labor Day weekend or a few days before Toronto starts, couldn’t be screened in Toronto during the first four days. As this policy pissed off some indie-level/arthouse distributors, it can be presumed that Toronto figured the hard-ass posture was more trouble than it was worth. Boiled down, the new policy stipulates that films which have played Telluride will be eligible to screen during Toronto’s opening weekend, but not at any of the city’s three super-deluxe venues — the Elgin Theatre, the Princess of Wales theatre and Roy Thomson Hall. Which is fine. Toronto has decent venues besides these (Bell Lightbox, Scotiabank, Ryerson) plus the sound at the Princess of Wales theatre was awful last year so this is actually a partial plus. Deadline‘s Pete Hammond: “Clever TIFF. You managed to get some press saying you have ‘reversed’ this policy when in fact you’ve simply told a lot of players…that they can premiere whenever they want in Toronto but they may have to settle for going coach, not first class.” More precisely: “Telluride first? Fine, but you’ll have to ride coach in Toronto during the first four days.” Private TIFF Translation: “Sorry but our sense of Canadian pride insists on this policy. We’re still peeved about Telluride-first premieres and try as we might we can’t — won’t! — just roll over and play along like we used to do. We must apply a certain degree of punishment for Telluride-firsters. Besides the new deal isn’t that bad. They can live with those secondary venues.”