TIFF is arguably one of the most exciting times to be in Toronto, and this year’s festival has not disappointed so far. Here are some of my fave TIFF 2017 moments, from fundraisers to celeb sightings.
1. Priyanka Chopra at TIFF Soiree
While I wasn’t able to make it to the TIFF Soiree this year, I followed the fancy affair on Twitter. Priyanka Chopra was this year’s guest of honor, in town to promote Pahuna: The Little Visitors, a film she produced with her mother, screening at this year’s festival. Chopra’s Soiree appearance was in service of TIFF’s Share Her Journey campaign aimed to promote and empower female voices behind and in front of the camera.
“One-third of the films selected for the 42nd Toronto International Film Festival are directed by women, with an even higher number of female-identified short filmmakers at Festival (42.4%) and the director-driven Platform programme at gender parity. Films by women at Festival this year include the solo directorial debuts of actors Greta Gerwig, Brie Larson, and Molly Parker, as well as new work by Deniz Gamze Ergüven, Dee Rees, and documentarians Alanis Obomsawin, Agnès Varda, and Jennifer Baichwal.” If you’d like to support women in film, you can donate here: http://www.tiff.net/shareherjourney/
2. Call Me By Your Name Premiere and After-party
My Day 1 of TIFF began in the best way possible – with tickets to the premiere of Call Me By Your Name, a Luca Guadagnino film starring the impossibly handsome Armie Hammer and newcomer Timothee Chalamet. Going in I had no idea who Chalamet was, but after watching the film I am now in awe of this talented young New Yorker and his magnetic screen presence. The movie was a stunningly filmed coming-of-age love story set in a small town in Italy; it captured the angst, the pain, and the joy that comes with that first love. And while it was a two-hour long affair, I wanted to watch it all over again once the credits started rolling.After listening to the director and the leading men give thoughtful and eloquent answers during the Q&A, le bf and I hightailed it to the film’s swanky after-party at STK Yorkville. I had the chance to congratulate Armie and Timothee on the film, and got le bf to snap a photo of Armie and I…which he sadly bungled. Thankfully the in-house photog captured our mini photo-fail and I still ended up with a memento of my brief Armie moment.
3. Julianne Moore VIP Reception with L’Oreal Paris
Celeb encounters are always an exciting part of TIFF, and this year I was lucky to have been invited to an intimate Julianne Moore reception hosted by L’Oreal Paris. Julianne arrived looking as stunning as ever, and shared a few thoughts on her favourite red carpet moments from prior years. She stressed that every red carpet moment is a result of a “professional collaboration”, and that if left to her own devices, she’s actually not that great at blowing out her own hair. When asked about her top beauty tips, Moore shared that she wears moisturizers with SPF since she was 23 years old, she pays regular visits to Joanna Vargas for facials in NYC, and that “sleep helps”. She also revealed that she owns the same pair of Givenchy heels in every colour because of how stable they are, even if they don’t look it.
4. Mongrel House
One of the liveliest places to be during TIFF is Mongrel House, with nightly parties that have everything from table tennis to live karaoke to free poutine. This year we spotted Stellan Skarsgård, having a great time, laughing and chatting with the attendees. Shia LaBeouf and Canadian tennis player Denis Shapovalov also made an appearance. With a lengthy list of Mongrel Media movies screening at TIFF this year, there’s a good chance more celebs will be stopping by in the coming days, so keep your eyes peeled if you find yourself near the beautiful Campbell House at night.
5. Papillon Grey Goose After-party at STK
STK Yorkville is playing host to several film parties during TIFF this year, sponsored by Grey Goose and Nordstrom. One of the first parties held at the fancy steakhouse was for Michael Noer’s remake of Papillon, with star Charlie Hunnam in attendance. The handsome actor happily posed for photos, taking selfies with everyone brave enough to ask. A selection of delicious Grey Goose libations was on offer, but the coffee-based Star of Film Noir cocktail was my fave (Grey Goose vodka, espresso, and coffee liqueur…yum!), and gave me a much-needed boost of caffeine for TIFF.
More TIFF moments are coming to the website soon! Including Jake Gyllenhaal in Stronger, and brunch with Benedict Cumberbatch!
Photo Credits: 2 – GP Images WireImage courtesy of TIFF, 2 and 5 – Lu Chau // Photagonist.ca, 3 – Ryan Emberley, 4 – Mongrel Media