Just for Laughs is in high gear and that star sightings continue to build! The premier Comedy Festival runs till September 29, 2019 with Toronto hosting a hotbed of comedic talent. Today we spotted Michael Rapaport out and about and with him were some familiar faces including Logan Lerman and Dean Collins in his entourage. We spotted them heading to Gabby’s on King Street for a bite.
We also spotted Esther Povitsky (Crazy Ex-Girlfriend) after her gig at TIFF Bell Lightbox.
The delightfully-funny Jonathan Van Ness is among the fantastic lineup of comedians in Toronto for the JUST FOR LAUGHS Comedy Festival. The Grooming Expert and star of Netflix’s revival of QUEER EYE venturing into Stand-Up Comedy delivered a spirited set with additional support from others including Naomi Ekperegin, who was a joy. While he showed room for potential, he came sharp with observations about Toronto including U.S. Open victress Bianca Andreescu and even Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s blackface scandal. Regardless, the audience was forgiving and were able to be won by his personality, dancing and gymnastics even. He jokes he fired his agent for booking him the same night as Lizzo in Toronto, the Singer appearing tonight at Budweiser Stage.
We had the pleasure of meeting him afterwards and he was high on getting everyone to watch what he considered an epic moment in history, the U.S. Women’s Gymnastic Team – The Magnificent Seven’s victory in the 1996 Olympics.
Running September 19 through 29, 2019, the right annual JFL42 Festival presented by SiriusXM is about to come to Toronto to lift us from those post-TIFF blues! This year is better than ever with a roster of talent that’s fresh and now including the likes of John Mulaney and Pete Davidson, Jonathan Van Ness, Gabrial Iglesias, Nick Kroll, Marc Maron, Eric Andre, How Did This Get Made and icon Carol Burnett all making their way to the City. The latter, just received earlier this year the inaugural Carol Burnett Award for Achievement in Television at the Golden Globe Awards. Her special event will be known as CAROL BURNETT: AN EVENING OF LAUGHTER AND REFLECTION.
The Festival also will feature In Conversations with the likes of Nick Kroll, Michael Rapaport, Steve-O and Cristela Alonzo, as part of the the Festival’s ComedyCon.
Passes go on sale Friday, June 7, 201910 AM and single tickets go on sale June 14 at 10:00 AM at www.jfl42.com.
Funnyman T.J. Miller finally is seeing the fruits of his labour being front and center where he belongs. After cutting his teeth several years on the stand-up circuit, he headlines his own show tomorrow night as part of his Alternative Comedy Tour which hits Sony Centre for the Performing Arts. He appears tonight in Ottawa.
Making the most of his time here, he has had a whirlwind past couple days doing lots of radio and television including CP24 Breakfast, Your Morning, Q, The Morning Show and The Roz and Mocha Show. Miller gathered the energy for a radio appearance before the break of dawn, donning a Remembrance Day poppy, soda and Starbucks in his hand. All the caffeines, please. ✔ Don’t act like you haven’t been there!
The star of She’s Out of My League, Silicon Valley, Deadpool and The Emoji Movie filmed a quick cameo here for GOON 2: LAST OF THE ENFORCERS in the City too last year. While he’s known for his signature humour, Miller actually tells The Roz and Mocha Show that his acting roots are more rooted in Horror. He can be seen next alongside Kristen Stewart in Thriller Underwater.
Fame came fast and furious for Ali Wong, the Funnywoman in Toronto to headline the Just for Laughs Festival, selling-out four shows at both Wintergarden Theatre and Sony Centre for the Performing Arts.
After honing her craft for many years as an Actress (credits include Oliver Stone‘s Savages and Inside Amy Schumer), a Stand-Up Comedian cutting her teeth before the tough-to-please New York crowd and a Writer (she has penned three seasons of ABC’s Fresh Off The Boat), San Francisco-born Wong gained much popularity through her 2015 Netflix Special, Ali Wong: Baby Cobra. Almost unheard-of she taped the Special covering several provocative topics, while seven months pregnant.
Wong at Wintergarden Theatre just recorded an upcoming special for Netflix, footage to be taken from two back-to-back shows debuting new material including her new-found perspective as a mom. She appeared tonight at Sony Centre, her final of four sold-out appearances with hilarious opener Kevin Camia. More here.
While airing her grievances about giving childbirth, she heard the cries of a baby in the audience and a fan with her six-month-old baby came forward to the stage. Wong joked that the point of the Show was to escape babies and questioned whether she was really hearing a baby or if it was actually PTSD!
Taking place tonight at the Sony Centre for the Performing Arts, the fifth annual Canadian Screen Awards honoured the year’s best in Television, Film and Digital Media. Earning top honours tonight was ORPHAN BLACK with five wins for Best Dramatic Series, Original Score, Supporting Actor (Kevin Hanchard), Writing and Lead Actress (Tatiana Maslany). The Toronto-made Series, which currently is filming its final episode, will be premiering its fifth and final season Saturday,June 10, 2017.
Leading the way in the Film categories was Xavier Dolan‘s IT’S ONLY THE END OF THE WORLD. The French-Canadian Film which was Canada’s submission at the Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film this year, took home Best Picture, Best Director (Dolan), Adapted Screenplay, Cinematography, Makeup and Best Supporting Actor (Vincent Cassel).
Regina-born Actress Tatiana Maslany was the queen of the night, winning for both her work on Orphan Black and as Lead Actress in the Feature Film The Other Half in which she stars opposite her real-life partner Tom Cullen.
Toronto’s Stephan James took home Lead Actor for his work on sports drama RACE. He stated, “The greatest honour of my career was to portray Jesse Owens.”. The Film also won for Visual Effects, Overall Sound and Sound Editing.
Hosted by a spirited Howie Mandel, the evening also saw icon Christopher Plummer win a Lifetime Achievement Award. He says, “I’ve spent almost 70 years making a fool of myself in this crazy profession of ours. And I’ve had the time of my life.”.
Comedian Dave Chappelle also flew-in for the occasion, presenting the Icon Award to JUST FOR LAUGHS. He credits the organization for helping him achieve his big break, joking “I’d never came to Canada before I came to this festival and when I did, I found that Canada was kinder and gentler, like a little gay brother I didn’t know about.”.
See Red Carpet Highlights from the 2017 Canadian Screen Awards:
See Amanda Gilmore‘s and my Interviews with some of the evening’s stars on the Red Carpet including the cast of Kim’s Convenience and Dave Chappelle:
Some Snaps from the Evening:
Shailyn Pierre-Dixon, “Between”
Sangita Patel, “ET Canada”
Dylan Authors x Mike MacMillan, “WEIRDOS”
Simu Liu, “Kim’s Convenience”
Karine Vanasse, “Cardinal”
Michelle Nolden, “Saving Hope”
Erica Durance, “Saving Hope”
Chloe Wilde, “eTalk”
Penny Oleksiak, Gold Medal Olympian
Kim Coates, GOON
Kevan Funk x Jared Abrahamson, “Hello Destroyer”
Christopher Plummer, Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient
From September 24 through October 3, 2015, Torontonians are treated to the thrill that is the Just For Laughs Comedy Festival. Giving us access to some amazing comedy acts this year, the Festival is headlined by the likes of Patton Oswalt, Craig Ferguson, Chris Hardwick, John Mulaney, Gilbert Gottfried, T.J. Miller, Ilsa Schlesinger, Grace Helbig and new Daily Show Host as of Monday, Trevor Noah.
Although we’re positively pooped from TIFF ’15, the Festival gives us another reason to be out this weekend and at Sony Centre tonight we got the absolute pleasure of meeting two of the JFL 42‘s biggest names, Noah and Hardwick. Despite being in a rush to fly-out presumably to New York to work on his high-profile new gig, Noah was amazing to stop and roll-down his window for a Selfie. I happened to be in striking position and was one of only a few to get that snap! “Take off your lenscap!”, he directed me amidst the commotion.
Hardwick, known best for hosting AMC‘s The Walking Dead Aftershow, Talking Dead, was most gracious. He arrived super-early for his 9:45 PM show and had security ready to keep his fans in order, stopping for autographs, chats and photos with the large crowd. A champ!