Toronto fest declares Sept. 5 ‘Bill Murray Day’

In a show of apparent elation that the festival could track down Bill Murray and slate his new film, “St. Vincent,” as a showcase presentation, the Toronto Film Festival has gone all out and set aside an entire day of programming centered on the actor. Friday, Sept. 5 has officially been declared “Bill Murray Day.”

Screenings of three of Murray's classic comedies will carry the day: Ivan Reitman's “Ghostbusters” and “Stripes” as well as the late Harold Ramis' “Groundhog Day.” “St. Vincent” will bow as a world premiere later that night. In addition, a contest will be held to reward Murray fans who attend all three screenings: up to 50 of them will be granted a ticket to the “St. Vincent” premiere.

All of the Murray screenings, including the “St. Vincent” premiere, will happen at the TIFF Bell Lightbox.

So, if you're planning to attend the fest and you don't mind carving out an entire day for non-premieres and such, you could do a lot worse than sitting in a room and watching “Stripes” and “Ghostbusters” and “Groundhog Day,” let me tell you. The question is, was this just a polite show from the festival, or is a certain someone (coughHarveycough) getting the gears in motion for an awards push later in the season.

We'll just have to see if the film is up to snuff first.

“St. Vincent” opens Oct. 24.