Wednesday, 27 September 2017

'A Tree in Water: My Journey From Aotearoa to The Great White North' Chapter 21.

It’s been six months since I met my first celebrity, and now I’m about to meet my second, and my first director. As I always had hoped, my opportunity to meet one of my heroes had finally come true during my time here in Toronto. Then it became the best day of my life when I finally shook hands, bear-hugged, as well as got an autographed book and a photo with Guillermo del Toro at AGO. For those who are not familiar with the Master of Horror, Guillermo del Toro is a renowned Mexican Filmmaker known for his Horror Fantasy and Genre-bending films such as Cronos (1992), Mimic (1997), The Devil’s Backbone (2001), Blade II (2002), Hellboy (2004), Pan’s Labyrinth (2006), Hellboy II: The Golden Boy (2008), Pacific Rim (2013), Crimson Peak (2015), and The Shape of Water (2017). Del Toro’s works is characterised by a strong connection to fairy tales and horror, with an effort to infuse visual and/or poetic beauty. He has a lifelong fascination with monsters, which he considers symbols of great power.

The artist and the man, like Hans Zimmer, was a humble, funny and a genuine human being. It is no wonder why both artists are highly respected in their fields. But, unfortunately, all opportunities have their flaws and, like all good things, must come to an end. Even though I got to shake the master’s hand, got the biggest bear-hug from him and got an autographed book and a photo with him, I never got to talk to him at length, tell him how much he and his contributions to cinema means to me as an aspiring filmmaker, and never got to ask him my question. This was due to the fact that the line was LONG and security only allowed each person a short window of time with him. However, thanks to a friend I had met in line, the end of my time at AGO got better when I was invited to attend a VIP preview of del Toro’s exhibition before it opened to the public. Naturally, I couldn’t turn down the opportunity. Even though I went to his exhibition at LACMA in Los Angeles, the exhibition was similar to the LA exhibition; everything I had seen before and had expected was present. Yet, at the same time, it was certainly a different iteration of the exhibition and had its own elements that made it stand out from all the other iterations of the exhibition so far.

So once again, to recap, I became one of the luckiest guys in Toronto, having got the opportunity to meet one of my heroes. In addition, I got to shake his hand, got a bear hug from him, got my Guillermo del Toro sketchbook autographed and gotten a photo with him. All of which I will treasure for the rest of my life. I sincerely hope I will get another opportunity to see him again, only next time I hope we’ll be colleagues. I felt the happiest and the most optimistic I had ever been that day. For the first time in my life, I felt that I could be able to do anything I wanted. With that in mind, I also felt that good things would come my way.

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