Creative Coalition 11th Annual Spotlight Initiative Awards, TIFF 2019 @ Nordstrom Supper Suite, Sep. 7

by A.J. Lam

The 11th Annual Spotlight Initiative Awards Lit Up The Saturday Night of the Toronto International Film Festival, honouring NICOLAS CAGE, IMOGEN POOTS, KEKE PALMER, CHLOE BENNET, and ALEX WOLFF.

The Creative Coalition,  the Premier Arts and Entertainment Social Advocacy Organization, is pleased to honour actor, singer and the newly anointed co-host of “GMA3: Strahan, Sara & Keke,” Keke Palmer (Hustlers),  Nicolas Cage (Color Out of Space), Imogen Poots (Castle in the Ground), Alex Wolff (Castle in the Ground), and Chloe Bennet (Abominable) at the 2019 edition of the Creative Coalition’s Spotlight Initiative Gala during the Film Festival in Toronto.

Oscar-winning actor Nicolas Cage asserted that art has a healing power.  “Art has always been something like a medicine to me. The healthiest medicine — a medicine that takes the lead of pain and transmutes it into the gold of creative expression…”

The awards gala took place before the world premiere of Cage’s Color Out of Space, the science fiction horror flick written and directed by Richard Stanley, based on a short story written by Lovecraft.

In addition,  the actor also discussed funding cuts in art education. “When you think about a world that doesn’t have art in our curriculum, in our schools, you can see how we really are in need of that medicine.”

Abominable star Chloe Bennet, Hustlers star Keke Palmer,  and Castle in the Ground director Joey Klein and stars Imogen Poots and Alex Wolff were also honoured at the gala fundraiser.

Creative Coalition CEO Robin Bronk hosted the Spotlight Initiative Gala awards dinner at the Nordstrom Supper Suite. Among the presenters were Abominable director Jill Culton and actors Dean Norris (Breaking Bad) and Wilson Cruz (Star Trek: Discovery).  

The Awards were presented at the star-studded Creative Coalition’s Spotlight Awards Gala Dinner held on Saturday evening, September 7, 2019 at Nordstrom Supper Suite at MARBL, in Toronto’s top restaurant and bar area on King Street West. 

The Creative Coalition’s Spotlight Initiative Awards are a prestigious honour in the independent film arena, recognizing and bringing together the most significant leaders in independent film who do well by doing good. 

The ultra-exclusive private gala awards dinner was presented by Nordstrom Supper Suite at MARBL and co-sponsored with Marriott Bonvoy and Ciroc.


The Creative Coalition ( is the premier nonprofit nonpartisan social and public advocacy organization of the arts and entertainment community.  Founded in 1989, by Christopher Reeve, Alec Baldwin, Susan Sarandon, and other prominent members of the creative community, The Creative Coalition is dedicated to educating its members on issues of public importance.

The Creative Coalition uses the power and platform of the arts and entertainment communities in award-winning public service and advocacy campaigns. The Creative Coalition leads the #RightToBearArts™ campaign to raise public awareness about and encourage civic activism in supporting funding for the arts and arts education. Actor Tim Daly serves as The Creative Coalition’s president.

The Spotlight Initiative Awards are a prestigious honour in the independent film arena. For over a decade, these honours have been bestowed during the Sundance, Cannes, and Toronto Film Festivals. Past recipients include Uzo Aduba, Alan Arkin, Ellen Barkin, Kathy Bates, Maria Bello, Paul Bettany, Nick Cannon, Jennifer Connelly, Lee Daniels, Jonathan Demme, Jay Duplass, Roland Emmerich, Vera Farmiga, Josh Gad, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Taylor Hackford, John Hawkes, George Hickenlooper, Dustin Hoffman, Jeremy Irons, Eddie Izzard, Anna Kendrick, Barbara Kopple, Barry Levinson, William H. Macy, Alfred Molina, Demi Moore, Tracy Morgan, Julia Ormond, Sean Penn, Parker Posey, Jonathan Pryce, Quentin Tarantino, Stanley Tucci, and Shailene Woodley, among others.

Additional information about The Creative Coalition can be found at or by following @TheCreativeC on Twitter and thecreativecoalition on Instagram.