Canadian TGON reps Skylar, Steve, and Michael, attended Toronto’s ultimate fan convention from August 31 to September 3, and here’s the scoop on the jam-packed weekend of geekery!
Check out our recap here of our first celebrity Q&A of the weekend, with Doctor Who star Matt Smith!
Singer/actor Meat Loaf was the first panel of the day, filling room 106 with longtime fans, ready to casually chat with everyone about his acting career–The Rocky Horror Picture Show, and Fight Club, to name a couple–as well as his musical background (most notably, the Bat Out of Hell album trilogy).
A special treat at this year’s FanExpo was that legendary actress Kathleen Turner was on hand and held a celebrity Q & A. While she was there to appease the animation fans for her work as Jessica Rabbit on Who Framed Roger Rabbit, she spent time with the fans answering questions and sharing stories that covered her entire 40 year career. My personal question to Kathleen was which was the highlight of 1994 for her getting her first directing credit (Leslie’s Follies), being on the Simpsons (Stacey Lovell) or playing Beverly Sutphin in Serial Mom. Her answer was Serial Mom and would express her love of Director Jon Waters. Of course, a big reason why she was there was for her work as the animated bombshell Jessica Rabbit in Who Framed Roger Rabbit. When asked her favorite memory from the filming process her answer was…
You know we lost Bob Hoskins years ago, who played the detective, was one of the best actors I’ve ever worked with. Bob was brilliant, I loved his work and loved having a chance to interact with him. Most of my work as you know was voicing Jessica. They would send me the unfinished footage, Jessica wouldn’t have a face and wouldn’t have the (breasts), because all of that had to be done once we had the breath. One of my contributions of which I’m proud of is I said to Bob Zemekis (director) is why don’t we add a lot of big “sighs” and make them (breasts) bounce. And he liked it so we did!
She would go on to say the most fun she would have on sets would always be with Michael Douglas and Danny DeVito who would work together three times on Romancing the Stone, Jewel of the Nile and War of the Roses. (source: Steve Dunk, The Game of Nerds)
We also had the pleasure of attending the one and only John Barrowman’s panel. Of course, we couldn’t fit it into this article if we tried, so check it out! As per usual, “anything goes…”
What better way to start off Day 3, than with a casual chat between the cast of Stranger Things and about 4000 people? Finn Wolfhard, Gatan Matarazzo, and Caleb McLaughlin entertained a full audience by answering fan questions, discussing their on-set shenanigans, and elaborating on their experiences filming the popular Netflix series. Unfortunately, they were unable to reveal any details about Stranger Things Season 2, but that did not stop the trio and the audience from having a good time. One particularly touching moment of this panel, was when the trio agreed to film a short video with a fan, whose close friend was in the hospital, on her birthday; the entire audience participated as they panned the camera around the 4000+ seat hall. (source: Skylar Shelley, The Game of Nerds)
Nathan Fillion was next on the list. Near the start of his Q&A, he pointed out “If I sound a little sick…it’s because I’m a little sick,” but he remained as energetic and comedic as ever. Fans queued to ask Fillion questions about his iconic past roles in Firefly, Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog, and Castle, to name a few, but many were anxious to hear more about his upcoming mysterious role in Netflix’s A Series of Unfortunate Events. (More on that here.) While he could not elaborate on the details of this role (believe me, when it was my turn to ask a question, I asked!), Fillion had nothing but good things to say about the show, the production, and the cast (particularly, Neil Patrick Harris), clearly wearing his excitement on his sleeve. (And leaving us all waiting in anticipation, of course…) (source: Skylar Shelley, The Game of Nerds)
One of many Celebrity Q&A panels this year at FanExpo was with the great Canadian himself Tom Cavanagh. Most of you will know Tom from the CW show The Flash playing among many things Reverse Flash and Harrison Wells but he has been acting in various movies and TV shows since 1989. Cavanagh has played leading characters in popular shows such as Ed, Scrubs and Providence. Tom is very comfortable interacting with the fans and really does a great job of making a large room feel very small and intimate. He spent nearly an hour answering all types of questions with most of them focusing on the The Flash of course.
What’s it like working with Grant Gustin?
The truth is Grant is a rarity, he’s a younger guy. He’s incredible and a phenomenally talented actor who doesn’t get enough credit for his ability. He’s got real ability, he’s colossally talented. He doesn’t care about the acclaim, about all the stuff that can unmoor you. He’s going to have a massive career.
If H.R. didn’t exist and you could play any other character, who would it be?
Again, I loved playing the Reverse Flash, I had so much fun playing that character. I’m pretty sure it would Eobard Thawne. As a Lex Luthor type villain you always want to keep coming back to it. We loved doing Season 1 and I look forward to putting the suit on whenever that may happen again.
And finally… Are you wearing anything underneath the Reverse Flash suit?
So that’s just a few of the highlights from a great hour long Q&A session with Tom who was charming, gracious and forthcoming. I met him afterwards and he couldn’t have been nicer and even remembered meeting our Game of Nerds chief Shannon in California. The entire panel has found it’s way online so I encourage you to seek it out. (source: Steve Dunk, The Game of Nerds)
Fans were treated to a special guest at FanExpo this year as Jean Grey herself, Famke Janssen, made a rare appearance and held a celebrity Q & A. Things got off to a funny start as the moderator provided by FanExpo didn’t show up so Famke came out with a close friend of hers instead. Janssen who of course played the popular part of Jean Grey in five X-Menfilms, Xenia Onatopp in James Bond: GoldenEye and co-starred in three Taken films alongside Liam Neeson. They first discussed her love of Toronto after having filmed several things there including X-Men and Hemlock Grove. Famke has starred in several films and TV shows over the years and with so many projects coming up it was fun to hear about all the cool things she’s up to. The first question of the panel was mine and I asked her about her feelings about Logan and Hugh Jackman’s run coming to an end…
Hugh Jackman is such a talented actor and it’s impossible to imagine anybody ever as Wolverine other than him. That’s just who he is, he embodies that part and character. He did it so incredibly well that I think everybody’s gonna be so sad that the journey is over with but he’s left just a legacy behind him. So that’s amazing. I feel really grateful for the opportunity, for all the times I’ve been able to work with him over the span of so many years and so many movies.
So that’s it! It was a great panel discussion and Famke was very gracious and very respectful of the impact her role as Jean Grey has had on young women around the world. She looks forward to playing more roles that center around strong women and have important relevant stories to tell. (source: Steve Dunk, The Game of Nerds)
Another fan-favourite panel featured Internet star Felicia Day. Fans had many questions to ask her, especially in regards to her recent role in Supernatural. When asked about her character’s departure from the show, she responded by saying that any show needs “twists and turns” for conflict, and to keep the story moving, and although it was hard for her to leave the show, she understood why…and would still love to come back. Other fans at the panel simply came for advice, or to hear Day’s nerdy sort of ‘success story.’ She provided much entertainment over the hour-long panel (for example: at one point she demonstrated pilates. See above photo.), and ended with these words of motivation: “Your responsibility in life is to create.” (source: Skylar Shelley, The Game of Nerds)
One of the last panels of the day was with former Doctor Who star Billie Piper. (In a truly relatable manner, she showed up wearing sweatpants and a sweater… basically representing how most of us probably felt by the end of Fan Expo day 3…) She proceeded to have a relaxed and friendly conversation with every fan who queued for questions, discussing her start on the reboot of Doctor Who, and her more recent notable role in Penny Dreadful.
Stephen Amell, the star of Arrow, kicked off the last day of Fan Expo. He said he was happy to be home in Toronto while also jokingly taking shots at Hamilton, a neighbouring city. Fans started asking him questions right away, including if he ever wanted to direct an episode of Arrow. He replied that for now he’ll stick to acting because as a director, you spend 24/7 getting an episode done. Because of his family, he wouldn’t be able to commit to it.Among other things Stephen spoke about John Barrowman being a notorious prankster, being surprised that his cousin is actually a decent actor, wanting to do another wrestling gig and the origins of his ‘well fed artist’ handle on twitter. (source: Michael Vargas, The Game of Nerds)
Catherine Tate brought a fantastic energy to room 106 that afternoon. Highly interactive with her audience, running around in the crowd and occasionally calling out specific audience members for yelling out comments/questions, it was clear Tate was in her comedic element. Of course, fans were curious to hear her thoughts on the upcoming regeneration of the Doctor (to be portrayed by Jodi Whittaker), and her response was simply “She’ll be great. She’ll be brilliant.” (source: Skylar Shelley, The Game of Nerds)
Perhaps the most unique Q&A of the day was Anthony Daniels/C3P0 who physically went into the crowd to seek out questions. “You and your parents and your grandparents have been paying my salary for the last 40 years… and it’s not over yet.” He revealed he is not a fan of Jar Jar Binks or Ewoks, but he admits they were well received by children. Though he did have praise for Ahmed Best (Jar Jar) who he said played the part as directed. Daniels shared some anecdotes about Carie Fisher and how she used to drink Coca Cola constantly and walk around wrapped in Duvet’s for their morning walkthroughs. Weirdest merch? A scotch tape C3P0 dispenser with the tape coming out of from in-between his legs. (source: Michael Vargas, The Game of Nerds)
Anthony Stewart Head
Giles from Buffy the Vampire Slayer [Anthony Head] took a more traditional approach. Of his character he said it was a mix of Prince Charles and Alan Rickman. He jokingly teased a fan who asked for a behind the scenes story from Buffy by saying “you realize that was 20 years ago right?” His memory was hazy but did provide a quick story about how the cast decorated the trailers. He even recited his famous ‘how do you do line’ from the show. (source: Michael Vargas, The Game of Nerds)
The Rocky Horror Picture Show’s own Patricia Quinn & Nell Campbell
Patricia Quinn and Nell Campbell capped off the day and they did not disappoint. They were as witty and as sharp as ever. Patricia spoke to us about the song “Science Fiction,” and how her affinity for the song was the only reason she took the role. While Nell recounted her days as a busker and corset issues while shooting. Their tips for young actors? “learn your lines.” (source: Michael Vargas, The Game of Nerds)
And that’s it for our recap of this year’s fan-tastic convention! For even more coverage of Fan Expo 2017, stay tuned here at The Game of Nerds, because we’ve got more content coming your way, including…
- Star Wars Rebels new season premiere + cast Q&A
- Cosplay photos, cosplay photos, and – you guessed it – more cosplay photos!
- Fan Expo “Draws” the Best in Comics