TIFF 13 - Day 2 - Meeting Brad Pitt, Hugh Jackman, Michael Fassbender, Susan Sarandon & More
Day 2 started for me at the previously impossible Princess Of Wales Theatre. A venue everyone loathed, dreaded & hated with an utter passion for its lack of space for people to stand. Well, shocker of the festival.
The 1 thing TIFF seemed to do better this year than previously... they closed down Kings St & made the whole street an area to stand. This made it MUCH MUCH MUCH better. I'll someday have to thank Tom Hanks, who the rumour goes, is the one who complained about the old POW set up & said it was not fan friendly.
The 1st premiere of the day for me was a a film with Kristen Wiig, Sami Gayle & unfortunate no-show Hailee Steinfeld.
"Hateship Loveship" The new set up was appealing to the stars, both of whom walked over & signed for a good portion of the crowd. I got 1 from each of them
After an extended lunch break, my friends & I went back to POW to stake out a good spot for the next premiere. "12 Years A Slave" had lots of name appeal with Benedict Cumberbatch & Michael Fassbender starring in it. But it was 1 of the people who had a very small role in the film, and was a producer on it that drew the crowds out. Brad Pitt.
I will say it right now. Brad was a champ. He got out of his car about 100 feet before the planned drop off area the TIFF personnel had set up so he could get out of his car & start signing. He signed for almost everyone that was in the 1st or 2nd row who could get an item near him.... of course, problem was, you couldnt move to save your life, as the street was at times, 10 people deep. So the hope of getting him & quickly moving to another spot was a fruitless venture. I managed 1, after he skipped me & I told him "c'mon I've been here 2 & 1/2 hours" which he stopped what he was doing, and said "wheres the guy whos been here 2 & 1/2 hrs" at the sae time I was saying to him "Brad, please" he clearly recognized the voice, and happily signed for me before going back to his stroll down the line. He must have signed for 20+ minutes.
Michael Fassbender was also a champ on the carpet. Maybe not to the extent of Brad, but everyone that wanted 1 from him seemingly got him..
Oddly, the movies star Chiwetel Ejiofor not only didnt come over, but didnt even acknowledge the 1000s of people waiting.
From there, I rushed over to the Nicole Kidman premiere just as she was working her way down the carpet. I chose a spot that had a nice 3-4 foot space between two morons on ladders in row 2 (yes, row 2.). The photogretards cried "hes pushing" to the security, then the 2 or 3 people in the row infront of him (you know, 2-3 feet away from him...enough room for 5 people to squeeze in, parroted his whining) & before I knew it, the security people were all standing around that area looking thru the crowd to see what was going on. Of course, there was going to be no time to explain why the 2 guys standing 4 feet from the carpet on 3+ ft ladders were in the wrong, so I just moved 3 feet over, but it was too late, as that space filled quickly with others & I never got near Kidman.
From there I went & checked out the back of the POW for the Pitt movie leaving.
I managed another Fassbender, but was disappointed when Benedict Cumberbatch, who must have arrived super late showed, and signed on 1 side, but didnt come over to our side. I, like several fans followed him. Great thing about T.O. downtown is, traffic doesnt go too fast sometimes. My friend & I caught up to him at a light 2 blocks away, he asked him if he could sign while they waited for the very long light. he declined saying "not on the street". We then attempted to find where he was going, but eventually our foot speed couldnt keep up with his SUV speed.
Walking back, we stumbled across Hugh Jackman & Jake Gyllenhaal having dinner before their film "Prisoners".
A good crowd was already there, but with no one on high alert I found myself a nice row 2 spot behind a photographer right near the rear SUV door. In front was a little girl with just a notepad, so I asked her mom if she wanted a photo instead & gave them a photo of Hugh & Jake to get signed.
Jake did his best Jake Gyllenhaal impression & left without even lifting his head. But Hugh came out, and while the autographs were nothing even close to what I got 15 years ago, he signed a good 10-15 autographs on both sides of the exit.
On my side, he of course stopped, signed for the little girl which made her & her moms night. Then signed for me. Before he was about to get into the car I yelled at him about a girl standing behind me who was literally on her moms shoulders trying to get him. He turned, looked up & signed her magazine, then bent down, trying to look thru the crowd to say hi to the girls mom. Classy thing to do for someone who had a premiere to get to.
I had a string of not so much luck for awhile. Getting to the Parkland premiere too late to find a good spot for Tom Welling and then got a spot for Zac Efron, but he skipped over me & stopped signing shortly afterwards.
I ended my night going all the way up to Isabelle Bader theatre for the "Last Robin Hood" premiere with Susan Sarandon, Kevin Kline & Dakota Fanning. I missed Dakota & Susan going in, but saw Kevin. The Oscar award winner happily signed for those who asked. On the way out, Susan, another Oscar Winner came over to the whole TWO of us that were there & signed. However, the diva Dakota Fanning, who USED TO BE nice, snubbed us. Two people, and she didnt even muster a "no" or even a turn of her head to acknowledge someone was there. Well, guess whose film I WONT be going to see. Wonder how the production companies Big Indie Pictures & Killer Films would feel knowing her ONLY job there, promote their film, alienated people instead of promoted it.
Dakota Fanning should really take lessons from the two Academy Award Winning castmates she had in this film. Her turn to the dark side was 1 of the larger shocks to me of the festival.
TIFF 13 - Day 1 - Meeting Benedict Cumberbatch, Zac Efron, Dan Stevens. As well as Bruhl & Hiddleston again.
Day 1 started with a text from my buddy "theres nothing downtown, come to the airport". So I did.
In whats becoming a tradition for me at TIFF, I always seem to have 1 single trip from hell day and this seemed to be that day. It took me over 2 hours for what is usually a 75-90 minute trip.
Once I got to the airport, I was underwhelmed with the fact I didn't get to see anyone till well afterwards.
Finally, after a long long wait, Dan Stevens, from "Downton Abbey" came thru to promote "The Fifth Estate" & for the few of us that had stuff, he was willing to sign whatever we had.
A little later Zac Efron showed up. With a posse of TIFF personnel & airport security, they tried to sneak the young star out a side door, but the paps & a couple fans were alert enough to find him & soon the rest of us did too. Once he got to his car he put his bags down & turned around for about 1 minute & signed about 4 autographs & took a couple pictures with & left. Leaving most of the growing crowd who were still just getting there empty handed.
I headed into town to work my first premiere of TIFF, The Fifth Estate at the Elgin Theatre. But no one showed. In the past some stars will show, some wont. I knew it was a gamble & this time, it didn't pay off.
Over at Roy Thompson Hall a little later was the actual premiere for TFE. The 1st person to show up was Benedict Cumberbatch, my "official" #1 target for all of TIFF. He signed a handful of autographs for the couple thousands fans & onlookers that had gathered there. He got close to me a couple times, but never close enough to get denied...which seemingly was what he was doing to people with actual photos to get signed.
Daniel Bruhl arrived a bit after & I managed to get 2 from the star. Making it 2 days in a row I got him.
The rest of the cast, I either missed chasing Benedict, or couldn't get close enough to.
Eventually, I gave up on the hope of getting Sherlock Holmes and headed over to Ryerson to do the last premiere of the evening.
At the "Only Lovers Left Alive" premiere, what can I say. All of them gave their all for the fans.
Tom Hiddleston signed anything he was able to get to, Mia Wasikowska got a pretty good chunk of the fans as well, Anton Yelchin also signed lots.
All in all, hard to think there will be a better all around cast this TIFF. They have set the bar high for the rest of the films.
After I ran out of things from that cast, I headed back to RTH on the usually faint hope that I could snag anyone, specifically Benedict Cumberbatch, leaving their premiere.
The karma gods were smiling. After my trip from hell that day, I was rewarded for my persistence, Benedict came up the 300 foot ramp to the crowd of 30-40 fans & signed for about 2-3 minutes. At 1st he outright was avoiding any photos, but eventually, he got to a point where he just seemed to think "ahh the hell with it" signed about a 1/2 dozen of them before leaving, mine being 1 of them. Great way to end my day.
DAY 1 - 14 autographs, 20 total
A+ TOM HIDDLESTON
A- MIA WASIKOWSKA
B+ ANTON YELCHIN
B DANIEL BRHUL
B DAN STEVENS
B- BENEDICT CUMBERBATCH
C+ ZAC EFRON
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