BY ERIC NEILSON
It’s safe to say Hollywood star Jay Baruchel doesn’t forget where he came from.
The comedian, actor and director was at the Oakville Centre for the Performing Arts on Monday to promote his new book, Born Into It. The book is based on his love for the Montreal Canadians and what it feels like to be a “superfan.” More than 500 filled the auditorium to attend the event.
The event started at 7 p.m. sharp and the audience was introduced to the interviewer, Bruce Arthur, a sports analyst for the Toronto Star. He briefed the crowd on Baruchel and some of his work before the major introduction. Before everyone knew it, they were breathing the same air as a celebrity.
Upon his entrance, Baruchel was greeted with a massive roar and applaud before taking his seat. Immediately the hockey jokes began and of course, as expected, the Maple Leafs were at the core centre of the jokes.
“Can you tell me,” Arthur said, “what is fun about being a Habs fan?” The crowd howled as the back and forth banter unfolded in front of them. “Not a lot right now,” Baruchel replied. “It’s a tough time for us, but the Leafs haven’t been much better for years now.” He also stated it was very hard for him after P.K. Subban was traded to the Nashville Predators in exchange for Shea Weber.
He also talks about how even though his relationship with his father was not a good one, he still loved him because he was a major influence in his love for the Montreal Canadians.
His dad was his head coach when he played hockey as a child, but he knew he did not have the same skills nor the desire his dad had to come anywhere close to making a career out of playing, which came to much of his father’s dismay.
He does touch on the fact that his father did support his love for movies and purchased him his first movie, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. This led him to pursue is career in Hollywood. Unfortunately, his father passed away shortly after he left for Los Angeles, and the two never had a chance to reconcile. All of which is covered more in depth in his book.
Baruchel, 36, stayed for book signings after the interview concluded and several of his fans had a chance for a meet and greet.
“I love Jay because he is a proud Canadian who is always so supporting of working in Toronto and finding amazing talent here at home. He is a good actor and a good person,” says Alexandra Kubiak, a Milton resident who drove down to attend the event. “My favourite movie he has starred in is She’s Out of My League.
The event was a success, but from Baruchel’s perspective it couldn’t possibly be as fulfilling as being at the Bell Centre in Montreal for a home team goal. Or could it be?