For many of us, the Toronto International Film Festival is a chance to enjoy a night on the town, check out some buzzy movies, and hopefully have a meet-cute with Michael B. Jordan. But for the celebs, publicists, makeup artists, hair stylists, and hundreds of others hustling behind-the-scenes, the festival is a grind (albeit a fun one). We asked some of TIFF's insiders to spill on how they spent their busiest hours.
Today: Montreal musician and Chanel ambassador Charlotte Cardin, in town for the Chanel & Variety Female Filmmaker Dinner, which included celebrity guests Kerry Washington, Kristen Stewart, Priyanka Chopra Jonas, and Nicole Kidman.
Friday, Sept. 6
10:30 a.m. — I leave my apartment in Outremont, Montreal, and head to the airport. I grew up in Outremont and went to school there. I got my apartment here about a year and a half ago. It’s just nice to be where you grew up; you have all your spots. I’m supposed to be on a later flight, but I get to the airport pretty early and I grab a bagel and just hop on the earlier flight. It’s so easy with Porter.
1 p.m. — I arrive in Toronto and come straight to my hotel, The Anndore House. I watch American Ninja Warrior for two hours. I don’t have cable at home that’s why I love watching TV in hotel rooms. I always watch guilty pleasures.
4 p.m. — I head to the Chanel store. I had my eye on a ring so I buy it! It’s the Coco Crush. The clerk gives me the box and then asks, “Actually do you want to wear this right now?” Of course I say yes.
5 p.m. — I head to the Chanel offices for my fitting for the Chanel and Variety dinner in honour of female filmmakers. I try on a few outfits, but the first one is the one. It’s a long, white shirtdress with a little cardigan on top and white boots. I love it. It’s from the latest Cruise collection. I was actually at that show and that was one of my favourite looks. You never get used to this! I’m always in a T-shirt and jeans except when I travel with Chanel. This is not my day-to-day life.
7 p.m. — I meet my manager, Laurie Lee, at Sakai Bar on Dundas West. We have sake and more sake and more sake. So good. The food is super light and delicious. We have a cabbage salad, tuna sashimi and chicken and mushrooms and an eggplant dish, and gyoza. The cabbage and the gyoza are the highlights.
10:30 p.m. — I get back to my hotel. I don’t wear a lot of makeup, but I remove any with makeup remover. Then I just wash my face with water.
11 p.m. — I read a little bit, Nana by Émile Zola. I’ve been reading my way through his works; I feel like you really get to know the style of a writer when you do that. He’s very descriptive. Sometimes it gets a little bit heavy because he’ll spend about 20 pages describing the style of a room, but you really feel like you’re here. The one I’m reading now isn’t my favourite but it’s pretty good.
11:30 p.m. — Lights out.
Saturday, Sept. 7
9 a.m. — I slept really well. I go downstairs because there’s a coffee shop, the Scarlet Door Café, and I get a doughnut and coffee and read some more in my room. I answer a few emails and read the news, doing the slow, Saturday morning stuff that I don’t have time to do when I’m in Montreal and going to the studio.
Late morning — I go back to the Chanel store. I had spotted a wallet on a chain yesterday, and I go back and get it. I feel really bad saying all of this. It’s a vacation. It’s a big treat day. I’m usually just in the studio or touring and staying in a Holiday Inn or a big van. I just want to be clear that I never do this! If I was at home, I would probably be writing music and finishing the album or in the studio because we’ve been recording the final takes for the vocal stuff on the record. The album is hopefully out February and then we’ll tour. We’re ready to get back to it. We toured a lot last year, like non-stop, so we were all a little bit tired, but now we’re all looking forward to getting back on the road.
1 p.m. — I come back to the hotel and Laurie Lee meets me. We order room service. I get the avocado toast, which has a bunch of different vegetables on it. And Laurie Lee gets a lamb burger. And then we watch 90-Day Fiancé. And then makeup arrives!
2 p.m. — I don’t get my makeup done every day. It’s always a treat. It’s always something as natural as possible. A little bit of mascara but only when I have an event. Julie Cusson, Chanel makeup artist, knows. We’ve been working together for a long time. It’s just simple. I never really do my hair. I just wash it and then sometimes I straighten my bangs a little bit, but that’s it.
Late afternoon — We have a little portrait session with Rolling Stone. I think it’s a bunch of different people they’re shooting. And then it’s off to dinner.
8 p.m. — I'm at the Variety and Chanel dinner at La Banane on Ossington. I'm sitting beside director Unjoo Moon, Montreal actress Nahéma Ricci, Montreal director Sophie Deraspe, Hannah Gross, Morfydd Clark and Laurie Lee. Needless to say I'm surrounded by very inspiring, creative women! It’s really awesome to have so many incredible artists from all industries here. Dinner is delicious. We have a peach and tomato salad that's to die for and the shrimp and cocktail sauce was my highlight.
12 a.m. — To bed! I decide not to attend any after-parties. I want to stay on the high I got from the lovely dinner. I fly back to Montreal tomorrow. My flight is at 1 p.m. so I’ll be home at 2:30 p.m!