Ottawa ON – When I told people that I was going to the Genie Awards after-party in Ottawa last night, the majority of the responses were: “What are the Genie awards? After explaining that the awards honour and showcase the year’s outstanding achievements in Canadian cinema, many of these people came to the conclusion that they were the Canadian version of the Academy Awards. I left it at that.
Besides representing my employer Stroked Ego (strokedego.ca) at the after-party, my goal was to meet the host of the show, William Shatner.
I am a huge fan of the actor, especially his work on Boston Legal. The party was held at Arc the Hotel in downtown Ottawa, and I was immediately impressed with the swankiness of it all. Despite the blustering winds and rainy conditions there was a red carpet with bright lights and ice sculptures, a doorman with a guest list, and even photographers ready to take pictures of famous celebrities. (They neglected to take mine – whatever!).
Upon entering the hotel, which is beautiful by the way, I was greeted by the likes of Jay Baruchel, Kardinal Offishal, Mia Kirshner, George Stroumboulopolous, Jian Ghomeshi, and Tyler Labine.
It was a relaxed atmosphere with the party divided into two lounges and 3 bars. One side was for conversation and networking, the other was for dancing and listening to music. It was just a great party with no drama, no gags or gimmicks.
What I particularly like about the night was how approachable the stars were. There was no pretentiousness about anyone I met. They were more than happy to talk to anyone, celebrity or not, and were just looking to celebrate the night. While I did not get to meet William Shatner, my favourite part of the night, and what really drove home the point that this is a truly Canadian event, was watching a group of stars, George Stroumboulopolous, Jian Ghomeshi and Mia Kirshner included, mowing down on poutine at the end of the night. On a freezing cold Canadian night, icy roads, and pouring rain, partying with poutine doesn’t get any more Canadian!