We never would have guessed that the most difficult TIFF party to gain access to would also be our last. Friday evening, we headed over to This Is London for the eTalk TIFF Closing Party, hosted by Ben Mulroney and Tanya Kim, where we encountered more than a little resistance at the front door. When we told the guest list attendant we were from Toronto Life, she demanded proof. Our editor’s business cards (we had eight of them) were not enough. Thankfully, we had our BlackBerry with Internet access to prove that our name was indeed on the Website. This also wasn’t enough, and the intrepid young lady further asked for ID to confirm our name. At first we were irked by all this obfuscating nonsense, but not long afterward, we concluded that she was likely trying to save us from what awaited inside.
The bar felt like we were in an episode of Growing Up Gotti. The men had a pretty standard TIFF uniform: crunchy hair, untucked button-up under blazer, pointy shoes (bonus points if jeans were embroidered). Those who strayed from that look decided to go with bedazzled Ed Hardy tees. If Fly nightclub is a sausage fest on the dance floor, This Is London is bratwurst central. The ratio was about 10 men to every woman, bumping and grinding their hearts out to numbing techno beats.
When Mulroney and Kim took the stage to thank “the producers” (always the most creative part of any film or event), no one paid them much attention. The music kept going at full blast. They thanked the bar and TIFF as well, but no one seemed to care. One guest we spoke to said “I didn’t even realize [TIFF] was still on. We just come here every weekend.”
We don’t plan on doing the same.