Drake performs during the “Aubrey & The Three Amigos Tour” in Toronto, Tuesday August 21, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Mark Blinch

Drake apologizes to fans for TIFF no-show, but offers little explanation

Drake offered his apologizes to moviegoers at Toronto International Film Festival, but gave little explanation as to why he bailed on his opening night event in the first place.

Drake offered his apologies to moviegoers at the Toronto International Film Festival on Thursday, but gave little explanation as to why he bailed on his opening night event in the first place.

In a video message that substituted for his original plans to speak in person Thursday night, Drake immediately acknowledged he left some fans high and dry after they paid more than $100 for tickets to the Canadian premiere of “Monsters and Men.”

“I wish I could be there to share this moment,” he said in a brief video introduction for the film.

“Unfortunately I’m on tour right now.”

That was the extent of his reasoning for why he pulled out of the event with only hours notice.

TIFF organizers announced the Toronto-based rapper as a guest a mere two weeks ago, which meant his tour schedule had already been in place for months.

A representative for Drake declined to offer further explanation.

Related: Netflix hopes to spark buzz at TIFF with big stars, major awards hype

Related: TIFF stresses ‘zero tolerance’ policy, plans women’s rally in #MeToo era

The rapper also thanked “Monsters and Men” director Reinaldo Marcus Green, as well as a company that created merchandise for the film.

“I’m just very excited and honoured to be part of something that continues a conversation in this day in age,” he said of the film, which follows the aftermath of a police shooting that kills a black man in Brooklyn.

The storyline tracks various people affected by the shooting, including someone who captured the incident on his phone, a teenager with a promising baseball career who’s grappling with the political fallout and a police officer who weighs his values and his loyalty to the force.

“I think it’s an extremely, extremely important moment and an important movie, and I hope you guys love it as much as I do,” Drake said of the film.

The rapper’s withdrawal from TIFF’s opening night shifted attention away from the film’s timely political themes and towards his unexpected absence.

It’s the second time in the past month Drake has cancelled on Toronto.

In August, he pulled out of his first tour date in the city “due to scheduling commitments” and has yet to announce a new date for ticket holders.

Drake’s website listed Thursday as a night off for the rapper, after a show in Montreal on Wednesday and ahead of a concert in Boston on Friday.

David Friend, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Broken axle New Hazelton derailment could happen again: TSB

Derailment by New Hazelton caused by a broken axle can happen again without different way to inspect

Smithers man sentenced to 51 days on nuisance charges

Frederick Patrick was released on bail on outstanding assault charges after breach sentencing

Not guilty pleas in sexual assault/forcible confinement case

Three Hazelton area men will face 8-day trial

One in critical condition after train hits grader near Smithers

The collision occurred at the Lawson Road crossing in the rural community of Quick

New SD54 superintendent named

Assistant superintendent Michael McDiarmid promoted to fill vacancy of outgoing Chris van der Mark.

Sell regulated heroin to curb B.C.’s overdose problem: report

B.C. Centre on Substance Use points to organized crime and money-laundering as contributing factors

B.C. legislature moving suspended staff controversy to outside review

Whale watching, Seattle Mariners trips billed as emergency preparedness, Speaker Darryl Plecas says

More people signing up for compulsory vaccines

Maple Ridge mom says public tired of hearing about measles

UPDATE: Man charged in stabbing of woman, off-duty cop outside B.C. elementary school

Manoj George, 49, is facing two counts of aggravated assault and two counts of assault with a weapon after the incident on Wednesday, Feb. 20.

Why do zebras have stripes? Perhaps to dazzle away flies

Researchers from University of Bristol look into why zebras have stripes

Poll: More voters believe Canada doing worse under Trudeau government

22 per cent believed the country is doing better and 27 per cent said things are the same

HBC shuttering Home Outfitters across Canada

North America’s oldest retailer is revamping its various stores to improve profitability

BC SPCA investigates Okanagan woman with prior animal abuse convictions

BC SPCA is investigating a property near Vernon

Man wanted for sex trafficking, confinement may be heading to B.C.

Kevin Myrthil, 26, is also accused of assault on a 19-year-old woman at an Edmonton hotel

Most Read