Eight new films featuring main characters caught at crossroads of their lives will join the previously announced films on this year's Toronto International Film Festival lineup.

Movies starring George Clooney, Reese Witherspoon, Jodie Foster, Joaquin Phoenix and Canadian Marie-Josée Croze are among the newly announced additions.

Joining the ever-growing list of gala presentations are:

  • Michael Clayton — a legal drama and directorial debut of The Bourne Identity and The Bourne Supremacy screenwriter Tony Gilroy. Clooney stars as a corporate lawyer who must preside over a crisis when another lawyer tries to sabotage a multimillion-dollar case, all while his own personal life is falling apart. Sydney Pollack, Tom Wilkinson and Tilda Swinton also star.
  • Rendition — an ensemble drama featuring Witherspoon, Jake Gyllenhaal, Meryl Streep, Peter Sarsgaard and Alan Arkin. Helmed by Gavin Hood, the Oscar-winning director behind South Africa's Tsotsi, the drama revolves around an Egyptian-born engineer who disappears mid-flight and his U.S.-born wife's attempt to track him down.

Sixfilms were added to the TIFF special presentations lineup:

  • Before the Rains — Indian director Santosh Sivan's 1930s period piece about a British colonialist who is discovered having an affair with his housemaid.
  • The Brave One — a Neil Jordan-directed thriller in which Foster's character becomes a vigilante after suffering a brutal attack.
  • Nightwatching — a British, Polish, Canadian and Dutch co-production exploring the circumstances around Rembrandt's creation of his famed painting The Nightwatch.
  • Nothing is Private — the directorial debut of Alan Ball, creator of TV's Six Feet Under and the writer behind Oscar-winner American Beauty. Based on the book Towelhead, the film looks at teen sexuality, politics and racial bigotry during the period leading up to the first Gulf War.
  • Reservation Road — a drama starring Phoenix and Mark Ruffalo, as two fathers whose lives become tragically entwined after the death of a child.
  • Le Scaphandre et Le Papillion (The Diving Bell and the Butterfly ) — a film based on the memoir of Jean-Dominique Bauby, the former editor-in-chief of French Elle whose life alters forever after he suffers a sudden stroke. Quebec's Croze is among the cast of the film, which won a best director trophy at Cannes.

This year's Toronto festival kicks off with the Canadian film Fugitive Pieces, earmarked as the opening night gala.

Considered one of the key events in the run-up to the film awards season, the Toronto International Film Festival runs Sept. 6-15.