#SPOTTED: RON PERLMAN, DAN FOGLER, JALEEL WHITE, TOMMY FLANAGAN, JONATHAN RHYS-DAVIES + MORE AT 2019 TORONTO COMICON
By David Baldwin and Mr. Will Wong
Now in its 19th year Toronto Comicon takes place at Metro Toronto Convention Centre this weekend bringing together fans of Sci-Fi, Anime, Cosplayers, Gaming, Comics and more in one extravaganza. Toronto Comicon year after year has given fans a chance to connect with their favourite idols with Panels, Autograph Signings and Photo Ops. Known as one of the most exciting events each spring in Toronto, the event this year was headlined by several stars including Ron Perlman (Hellboy), Dan Fogler (Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them), Jaleel White (Family Matters), Tommy Flanagan (Sons of Anarchy), Jonathan Rhys-Davies (Lord of the Rings), Corbin Bernsen (The Punisher) and several more!
Funko Pop! vinyl collectibles, rare editions of comic books and the opportunity to get one-of-a-kind commissioned pieces by Artists, continue to be a huge draw at the three-day affair. Truly Toronto Comicon is a mecca of all things adored.
Our David Baldwin had the opportunity to sit-in on a couple high-profile Panels for Ron Perlman and Dan Fogler.
Golden Globe Award winner Ron Perlman has had a celebrated career in Film and Television, including unforgettable performances on Television Series Beauty and the Beast and originating the titular role in a soon-to-be rebooted Hellboy. He delighted fans on Saturday afternoon with a lively Q&A session. He set the tone for the nearly hour-long discussion by taking the stage and immediately greeting the audience with “Sup motherfuckers?” He later apologized to everyone who brought their children with them, but did not change his casual demeanour. He says that “99% of the roles I’ve played, I’ve really loved” and likens that passion for his roles to his mantra of “Don’t say yes unless you really love the person you’re playing.”.
While he enjoyed talking about his popular roles (“Sons of Anarchy was larger than life”) and his close relationship with honourary Torontonian and Oscar-winning Director, Guillermo del Toro (going so far as to praise Pan’s Labyrinth as a “masterpiece” and calling it the “quintessential del Toro movie”), Perlman did not hesitate to get very candid with the audience. Upon hearing an audience question about his time on the ill-fated 1996 remake of The Island of Dr. Moreau, he flat-out said “We should have never made that movie,” and said that acclaimed Director Jean-Jacques Annaud saved his life and career more than once when he was “going to quit acting”. He also let the audience in on a very telling secret: “I’m not a big fan of watching my own stuff. I just do it and move on to the next thing.”.
Perlman next year can be seen in Paul W.S. Anderson‘s eagerly-awaited Monster Hunter.
Despite landing a breakout role in 2016’s blockbuster Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, the first of a few slated Films in the Franchise, Dan Fogler long has been honing his craft. Fashionably-late for his own Panel today, he was exactly as animated and wild a personality as you might expect: “I like acting in front of people.” In his discussion, he detailed how much joy it brings him to get to play roles in the likes of Fanboys, the Fantastic Beasts series and The Walking Dead saying the roles “speak to the little nerd in me.” He even went so far as to say that his work on Fanboys specifically gave him the “invitation to act like a kid again.”.
Fogler went the extra mile during the Q&A portion, handing-out comic books and memorabilia to each audience member who asked a question (and in a rather wonderful touch, personally delivered memorabilia and hugged an audience member in a wheelchair). He riffed on his time working with Christopher Walken on Balls of Fury (telling the audience Walken’s method of dialogue delivery: “It’s all about slow, medium, fast”) and reminisced about his inspirations, saying that after discovering that Voice Actor Mel Blanc was playing and creating voices for multiple Looney Tunes characters, “I want to do that!”. Fogler even tried his hand at Sign Language, poorly attempting to sign-out “Say hello to my little friend” to his on-stage interpreter.
The Brooklyn native currently can be seen on AMC’s The Walking Dead as Luke.
Check-out some more sights of 2019 Toronto Comicon:
John De Lancie
Cool, rare stuff
Also, CAPTIVE STATE is in theatres this weekend. Don’t forget to check-out this need little installation where you can star in your own Poster for the Film!
You still have one more day left to check-out 2019 Toronto Comicon as it wraps Sunday, March 17, 2019!
Missed it? Don’t worry, Fan Expo Canada is coming this Summer. More details here.
(Photo/video credit: Mr. Will Wong/David Baldwin)
#INTERVIEW: STARS OF 2018 TORONTO COMICON
Returning once again at Metro Toronto Convention Centre this weekend is TORONTO COMICON. The three-day event runs March 16-18, 2018, bringing together all things Comics, Sci-Fi, Horror, Anime, Cosplay and Gaming-related.
Artists and Celebrities are abound at the event, giving Fans a rare chance to meet the talent including the likes of Seth Gilliam (The Walking Dead), Eugene Brave Rock (Wonder Woman), Manu Bennett (Arrow), Mitch Pileggi (The X-Files), Joonas Suotamo (Star Wars), Megan Follows (Anne of Green Gables), Kristian Nairn (Game of Thrones), Mara Wilson (Matlida) and John Wesley Shipp (The Flash).
We even spotted iconic international DJ/Producer Deadmau5 out and about with his wife Kelly Fedoni. They looked extremely excited to meet Game of Thrones’ Kristian Nairn (Hodor)! You just never know who you’ll see at Toronto Comicon!
We got to chat with some of the talent at this year’s Comicon including the likes of Gilliam, Rock and Shipp at a Press Conference launching the event. We chat about some of their fan experiences and their own paths to success.
EUGENE BRAVE ROCK
Rock, an Alberta native now living in Los Angeles who has starred in the likes of Oscar-winning The Revenant, tells us that L.A. has made him “soft” in dealing with the Canadian cold. Since his role as Wonder Woman as The Chief, had admits “It’s nice not having to audition and just being given the role sometimes. I’ve been in this business a long time. It’s nice to be where I am. I’m thankful.”.
He was just in Salt Lake City for the Premiere of his Short Film Reign of Judges which he hopes will become a Trilogy or a Feature.
Gilliam whose The Walking Dead character Father Gabriel has recently been upgraded as a main character, tells us about his journey on the beloved Series. “It’s been surreal. Like holding onto a locomotive train and holding onto dear life.”. On some of the crazier experiences he has had on the Convention circuit, he says it’s “when people blur the lines between Father Gabriel and Seth Gilliam.“. “People tell me ‘I don’t like the way you did this and that’ and I’m like, ‘Okay, do you want me to conjure Father Gabriel for you? I’ll give you three turns and you can talk to Father Gabriel so you can talk to him!'”, he jokes.
On what makes Father Gabriel different from the him, he says “The real Seth likes to use profanity.”. We love real people!
JOHN WESLEY SHIPP
Shipp has built a long-lasting career on Series like Dawson’s Creek to now, The Flash playing psychopaths to superheroes. On still being in his prime, he reveals, “I work out four or five days a week. I was a really skinny kid. It wasn’t something I got into until I was 19 or 20.”.
On touring the Convention circuit, he tells us the greatest thing about it. “It’s an amazing opportunity to interact with an audience. Other than in Theatre which I’ve done, we don’t get that kind of rush in the studio. If all we had to do was work within the studio having a great time with each other, all we’d do is be pleased with each other but what makes it matter is the audience.”. He adds, “People are so warm and generous in their actions.”.
See some Snaps from the event below. Hover cursor left and right to navigate.
Learn more about Toronto Comicon here.
(Photo credit: Mr. Will Wong)
#TOCC17: ROBERT PICARDO, MICK & NOELLE FOLEY + CAST OF “GOTHAM”, “BONES”, “DEGRASSI” MORE AT TORONTO COMICON 2017
Now in its 20th successful year, Toronto ComiCon took place at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre South Building this weekend. The three day affair brought together over 25,000 Sci-Fi enthusiasts, Cosplayers and Artists together to celebrate their love of entertainment and comic book culture. Among the names to appear at Toronto ComiCon this year were the likes of Star Trek‘s Robert Picardo, Bones’ Michaela Conlin and T.J. Thyne, The Walking Dead‘s Laurie Holden, The Big Bang Theory‘s Kevin Sussman, Gotham‘s David Mazouz and Sean Pertwee, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’s Brett Dalton and wrestling icons Bret Hart and Mick Foley. Fans were delighted also to hear that some of the original cast of Degrassi including Pat Mastroianni, Stefan Brogen, Dan Woods, Stacie Mistysyn and Kirsten Bourne would reunite for their 30th anniversary too, giving fans a chance to partake in the super-rare opportunity!
As is the case every spring, we love that Toronto ComiCon brings out some of the most innovative Cosplayers to our City and more than ever this year, we saw almighty Disney front and center among many with costumes ranging from Moana to Beauty and the Beast‘s Belle to a BB-8-inspired dress!
Upcoming Films The Ghost in the Shell (Paramount Pictures Canada), Valerian and Power Rangers (the latter two eOne Films) also had interactive installations set-up allowing fans a chance to be a integrated into the set or witness up-close Film props.
See some highlights and click the right arrow the navigate the slideshows!
DAY 1 SLIDESHOW
DAY 2 SLIDESHOW
DAY 3 SLIDESHOW
Siobhán Rich and Justin Waldman from our Team had the pleasure of sitting on on some of Toronto ComiCon 2017′s hottest panels and they give us some of that insider’s scoop:
Robert Picardo revealed at his panel that he was at Yale pre-med when he went to Vienna at 19-years-old to perform in a Leonard Bernstein production. Bernstein himself told Picardo‘s mother than her son should be an actor rather than a doctor.
Many years later, he got the call to audition for the role of a “computer generated hologram who was colourless and humourless” on the that would be Star Trek: Voyager. He breathed life into that character even during the casting process where he channeled the original Star Trek doctor, Bones McCoy, ending his audition with the ad-libbed line, “I’m a doctor, not a nightlight.”
He famously knew nothing about Star Trek before joining the Trek family, but now embraces the global fandom thanks to devout Trekkies.
Still known as one of the most iconic wrestlers of our time, Bret Hart spoke to fans at his panel. He told fans that it was his father Stu Hart, who inspired him to be a wrestler and originally he thought to himself “There’s gotta be a better way to make money”, after going through the daily grind in his 20s as a construction worker. “I took wrestling very serious”. He reveals also that he is quite the avid Table Hockey player!
Commenting on his famous match against Shawn Michaels (The Heartbreak Kid) as part of the 1997 Survivor Series, known widely as one of the most shocking moments in wrestling history, Hart calls out his opponent by saying “You were a real asshole throughout the whole thing!”. If you might recall, Hart was placed in a submission hold and the bell rang immediately, pronouncing his defeat.
MICK + NOELLE FOLEY
The father daughter duo took questions from an enthusiastic and raucous crowd of fans. Mick is a two-time New York Times bestselling author who has been known as Dude Love, Cactus Jack and Mankind in the wrestling ring. The hardcore legend’s 23-year-old daughter, Noelle, looks to follow dad’s footsteps.
When asked about his daughter’s chosen profession Mick commented, “Noelle has a beautiful swan neck and it’s not meant to go to Suplex city.” Saying the pain he experienced was worth it “some days,” Mick proceeded to share stories about the unusual origins of his famous “Mandible Claw” move, who he would come back to fight if his health wasn’t a concern, and the long difficulties his youngest son has believing in his championship career.
BONES (TJ THYNE & MICHAELA CONLIN)
In their first ever Toronto ComiCon appearance Michaela Conlin and TJ Thyne thrilled fans of the hit Fox show Bones from they moment they arrived on stage. Angela Montenegro and Dr. Jack Hodgins, as they are better known on TV, spent an hour fielding questions ranging from favourite memories to the series finale which will air later this month.
Thyne, who plays “bug guy,” admitted with a laugh that he is not a fan of creatures that creep, crawl, or slither. In testament to the great chemistry the pair have on the show, they shared quick banter and affectionate barbs back and forth. When asked about his favourite moment on the show, Thyne laughed, “Kissing Michaela Conlin! That’s easy” “I paid him to say that,” she replied. “I was paid to kiss you!” came the quick rejoinder.
You know it’s a Canadian con when one of the most anticipated panels of the convention is for the five stars of the iconic series Degrassi Jr. High. Long before anyone had ever heard of Drake, Pat Mastroianni, Stefan Brogren, Stacie Mistysyn, Kirsten Bourne and Dan Woods helped define what it means to be a teenager during their tenures on Kids of Degrassi Street, Degrassi Jr. High, and Degrassi High. Toronto fans turned out in droves to cheer on five people who are still referred to more often by their characters’ names than their own. During the discussion, the stars discussed costars, plotlines, and what they’ve been doing in the years since graduation. And naturally, the gang all broke out into song to sing the Zit Remedy’s greatest hit!
Missed Toronto ComiCon 2017? Learn more about it for next year here.
And don’t stress, Fan Expo Canada will be here in the blink of an eye. More here.
(Photo/video credit: Mr. Will Wong/Justin Waldman/Siobhán Rich)
#SPOTTED: ROBBIE AMELL, JONATHAN FRAKES, JASON ISAACS, TOVAH FELDSHUH, KAREN ALLEN, CASPER VAN DIEN + MORE AT 2016 TORONTO COMICON
TORONTO COMICON took over the City this weekend in one of the most popular annual events to grace The 6ix annually. Offering Fans a rare chance to connect with their favourite Artists, Stars and Cosplayers, it runs three days from March 18-20, 2016. It is an opportunity to full-on “geek-out” unapologetically in a safe, welcoming environment with others who have the same passions.
Among the marquee names to appear at TORONTO COMICON this year include Jason Isaacs (Harry Potter), Jonathan Frakes (Star Trek: The Next Generation), Robbie Amell (The Flash), Tovah Feldshuh (The Walking Dead), Ernie Hudson (Ghostbusters), Casper Van Dien (Starship Troopers), Karen Allen (Indiana Jones) and several more.
We had the chance to chat with Frakes, Feldshuh, Van Dien and Allen, who were gracious enough to arrive early to greet Press before a packed day ahead meeting and greeting their admirers.
KAREN ALLEN has had a successful five-decade-spanning career as an Actress. Her big break came with a starring role in 1981’s RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK, opposite Harrison Ford. Malcolm X, The Perfect Storm and Scrooged are just some of the highly-recognizable titles in her body of work.
Will she be involved in the just-announced fifth installment of Indiana Jones?
Allen: “It’s a mystery who will join the cast. I’m waiting. hopeful and would love to do it. I hope they find a way to create a story.”.
Many don’t realize she also is an accomplished clothing maker. We ask if the worlds of acting and fashion ever collide for her?
Allen: “They haven’t so much. Except for a lot of people I know from Film world – I actually closed my studio because I’ve gotten too busy. But the store remains and I have all my favourite textile designers still at the store. I think a lot of people from other worlds I know go through there. Steven Spielberg has a couple of my sweaters and his wife Kate buys little things that I do too.”.
TOVAH FELDSHUH before her huge break on AMC‘s THE WALKING DEAD as Deanna Monroe, was an acclaimed actress of the stage. Just recently she landed a role on lauded CRAZY EX-GIRLFRIEND. In addition to being here for TORONTO COMICON, she announced she will be back to the City again June 5-19 at Greenwin Theatre for the biggest hit of my Broadway career, Golda’s Balcony.
Feldshuh: “I’m playing the Prime Minster of Israel. She’s size 16 and I’m size 4-6, 168 lbs. She’s 80 years old and I’m 39. You’re not gonna have the opportunity to see it at a theatre that size. I usually plays 1,000 seats. It’s on for two weeks. I own the rights to the Play and I take it out once a year only.”.
I ask her about he experience connecting with Fans at COMICON, where the spirit of “geeking-out” is embraced.
Feldshuh: “I’ve done COMICON, WALKER STALKER (a convention for The Walking Dead lovers) and WIZARD WORLD and this is my first time crossing the border. I love being here. You have the most polite, well-bred Fans. It must be horrifying for them when they cross south of the border. In certain cities, everyone asks for a hug. I’m a very warmhearted person, but get away from me! Now it doesn’t mean I don’t love you. I love people! They did a study of the most unpopular children in kindergartens. And it’s always the kids who break space!”.
CASPER VAN DIEN has had a lasting career which saw a breakthrough in 1997 with cult hit STARSHIP TROOPERS. Since then he has gone on to star on several high-profile projects like SLEEPY HOLLOW, TITANS, MONK and TARZAN AND THE LOST CITY.
We ask energetic Van Dien what he “geeks-out” to the most in celebration of the spirit of TORONTO COMICON.
Van Dien: “Star Trek. Jonathan Frakes is here! He has no idea I’ve seen every single episode, all the Films over and over again. We’re always on cool, cool, cool but really I’m a complete spaz! When I did BEASTMASTER III, I did it because Gabrielle Beaumont directed several episodes. I’m such a nerd I know Frakes shadowed her when he wanted to become a director. Guess what? I never got-on to STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION! Other obligations came into play…. like my family! I’d be on any set. It’s so much fun. I get to do something I love. If I wasn’t an actor, I’d still be doing something on a Film.”.
JONATHAN FRAKES is an Actor/Director known best for his role as Riker on STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION. He most recently had a role in GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY.
Now because of the Internet, you can’t avoid Memes referencing THE NEXT GENERATION, including “THE RIKER SITS DOWN”. How many chairs has Jonathan Frakes ‘rikered’ and was it something he created?
Frakes: “I didn’t know I ‘rikered’ that many! I won’t take all the credit! It happened when Ten Forward (a recreational facility on the Series) was built, backs of chairs were barely there and easy to ‘riker’. If you weren’t 6’4, it was easy to get out of those chairs. And also the suits were so tight!”.
See some of our Snaps from the Festivities:
Guess what? Even 6ixDAD NORM KELLY showed up!
There’s still one more day to enjoy the fun! Learn more about TORONTO COMICON here.
(Photo credit: Mr. Will Wong/Touchwood PR)
#SPOTTED: CHAD COLEMAN, SHANNEN DOHERTY, KAREN GILLAN, AARON ASHMORE, GRANT BOWLER + MORE AT 2015 TORONTO COMICON
Fans of Comics, Anime, Gaming, Sci-Fi and Horror all united together for a three-day Extravaganza this weekend at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre! In a rare opportunity for Fans to get dressed-up and connect with some of their greatest Idols intimately, the spirit of Toronto COMICON still is v. much alive, drawing over 30,000 people to the Venue’s South Building.
Highlighting Toronto COMICON this year were recognizable names including SHANNEN DOHERTY (90210 and Charmed), CHAD COLEMAN (The Walking Dead), KAREN GILLAN (Dr. Who), TERRY FARRELL (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine), GRANT BOWLER (Defiance), AARON ASHMORE (Killjoys), JAMIE MURRAY (Defiance), AMBER BENSON (Buffy the Vampire Slayer), TOMMIE-AMBER PIRIE (Pretend We’re Kissing, Bitten), KRISTIAN BRUUN (Orphan Black), The Cast of SAILOR MOON and more.
Fans had the opportunity to attend Q&A Sessions, getting a chance to ask their Idols their long-burning questions and among the hotly-attended were Sessions with Cast Members of ORPHAN BLACK and DEFIANCE, both Series which shoot here in the City.
Coleman proved to be rather popular at this year’s Event, drawing long lines for Photo Ops and Autographs, while also taking the time to work the Morning Show circuit in the City, including visits to Global Television‘s The Morning Show and KISS 92.5‘s The Roz & Mocha Show.
Being an avid Supporter of Toronto COMICON, we were delighted to hear that our Idol Doherty would be coming this year and would not miss the chance for a rare Photo Opportunity with the Actress known best for her star-making Roles as Brenda Walsh on Beverly Hills, 90210 and Prue Halliwell on Charmed. We’ve been waiting since the ’90s for this moment, and here it came!
It made our day seeing LEGENDOHERTY herself, full of smiles and visibly in a good place. We’re glad she got a chance finally to see how much we love her here in Toronto – her legacy still going strong this many years later!
In case you missed out on the fun, you’ll be pleased to know that Toronto COMICON goes on one more day and for ticketing information, please visit their official Website here!
(Photo credit: Mr. Will Wong)