Friday, October 27, 2023

Enjoy the Toronto International Film Festival even if you can't secure tickets!

 In preparation for next year, here are some tips on how to enjoy the fan zone without buying tickets at the Toronto International Film Festival. If you can't buy a ticket, you might also have a chance to meet celebrities!

① Four Theaters

At the International Film Festival, movies are primarily screened in five theaters:

1. Roy Thomson Hall (RTH)

2. Princess of Wales Theatre (POW)

3. Royal Alexandra Theatre (RA)

4. Toronto Bell Lightbox (TBLB)

5. Scotiabank Theatre (SCOTIA)

The fan zone is set up across the street from theaters 1 to 3. The abbreviations in parentheses are the official schedule abbreviations listed on the festival's website.

(In front of the Princess of Wales Theatre,
inside the silver fence at the very front of the fan zone)

② Controlled by Wristbands

To enter the fan zone, you'll need wristbands. Wristbands for the premium screenings of the day are distributed in front of RTH from 9 to 10 AM. You can request wristbands for specific movies or simply ask for all of them. 

(Note: Premium screenings are movies being premiered for the first time at the festival, typically attended by directors and lead actors for promotional purposes.)

(A bundle of wristbands)

③Fan Zone Entry 2 Hours Before the Movie

If you have a wristband, you can enter the fan zone 2 hours before the screening at each theater. If you want autographs and interactions, be sure to get to the very front. There will be lines to enter, so arrive about 3 hours in advance.

④ If You Couldn't Get Wristbands in the Morning

If you couldn't wake up early or had work preventing you from getting wristbands in the morning, there's still a chance! Arrive 1 hour before the screening at the fan zone, and if there's space available, you can enter.

⑤Celebrities Start Arriving About 40 Minutes Before

As the time gets closer, the street is blocked off, and limousines arrive. When celebrities arrive, call out to them enthusiastically. Celebrities often come to the opposite side of the street to interact with fans, but the fan zone is quite long. It depends on the celebrity where they choose to interact, so try to get their attention. Sometimes, you may only get an autograph or a selfie, so decide your priority in advance. Having a notebook and pen ready for autographs is also a good idea.

Unfortunately, I can't share photos of the actors and actresses online, so I share the picture of the autograph I really wanted, which was from Viggo Mortensen. (Viggo Mortensen is best known for his role as Aragorn in "The Lord of the Rings." He's already 60 years old, but he's still fantastic. I became a fan in junior high school, and I never thought I'd get to see him in person!)

Other celebrities I got autographs from:

- Patricia Arquette

- Camilla Morrone

- Willem Dafoe

- Lee Byung-hun

- Park Seo-joon

- Park Ji-hu

- Finn Wolfhard

This year, the Toronto International Film Festival took place during a strike by the Screen Actors Guild in Hollywood, which meant there weren't as many celebrities attending as usual. The list of celebrities usually attending in early September wasn't released this time, and the festival didn't seem as lively as in previous years. As a result, there were many available spots in the fan zone, even at the last minute. We hope for a more exciting festival next year.

There might be changes in the wristband distribution methods and timing for next year, but I hope you find this information useful!

HACK.BAR in Kobe

Hi everyone,

I'm Keitaro. This time, I'd like to introduce a unique bar in Kobe, HACK.BAR. In this bar, you can enjoy cocktails named after programming language and chat with software engineers!


At the entrance, you'll find a selection of technical books about programming.

The bartenders are also engineers and they can introduce you to their products and the source code displayed on the big monitor. They are high experts and very friendly. You can ask any questions If you are interested in!

The most intriguing part is their drink menu. The cocktail names are based on programming languages. You're sure to find something that interests you! Of course popular drinks are available as well.

Can you guess which drink I had?

The answer is.. Typescript! The color matches the language's logo color. Anyway, it was sweet and tasted great.

The bar is located at Sannomiya, the largest station in Kobe. If you visit Kobe and are interested in programming, I highly recommend this place!

Thank you for reading!😊


Tuesday, October 24, 2023

Nice to meet you!

Hello, everyone,

My name is Keitaro Hirano. I'm a web developer. I'm joining Tenatch as an intern and I'm very happy to be here! I was looking for an opportunity to gain interesting experiences and I found this internship program through Kobe engineer's community. I wanted to learn English and create helpful products with new programming languages. So this internship is perfect for me!

I live in Kobe now. It's a really nice city with mountains and ocean. I have two children and I go to the beach with them almost every weekend during summer. There is the second largest suspension bridge and I love this beautiful scene.

My children and me

Akashi bridge

Besides, I also love Canada. 10 years ago, I visited Toronto to see my girl friend. Nostalgic!lol Buildings and nature are so beautiful. Especially Canadian people are friendly and I don't know of any city with such diversity. I hope to visit the country again!

By the way, I love watching movies and playing soccer. I had never played soccer 2 years ago, but I joined a local soccer team's class and start playing!  Although it is challenging, I learned many useful lessons for my life! (Did you know that the word "soccer" is derived from "association", which hints as its social nature?)

Lastly, let me talk about my current job. I'm working in Japanese IT company and making a web marketing software, time scheduling application and mobile app. The company's office is in Tokyo, but I usually work from home remotely. I wish my experiences will be helpful for Tenatch's business. 

Ok, that's all. I'm so glad if we could talk a lot. So don't hesitate to talk to me or ask me any questions!

Thank you for your attention!

Saturday, October 21, 2023

Team MAGIC @ Draper University Herothon

After the disappointing showing at Junction ASIA, an opportunity to atone for past sins immediately presented itself. Having heard a lot of good things about Draper University, I decided to enroll in the online Fundamentals of Entrepreneurship course to see what it was about. To go off on a tangent, I almost did not get accepted for the program. I was almost not able to do the 15-minute online screening interview, as I was experiencing technical difficulties with my microphone. Being badly shaken, fumbling through the first few questions, and the interviewer not being in a good mood, I somehow managed to find my composure, and finish the last 5 minutes of the interview strong. I got accepted into the program. I guess all the grilling we got from the mentors at FI🌱 does help build up startup muscle memory.


And wow, what an experience! It was a huge cohort of more than a hundred people. Most them were sponsored by government programs(in particular, in Central Asia and Africa), it was a really interesting to experience to see how entrepreneurship is transforming those regions. In the middle of the program, there was the Herothon(Draper University Hackathon), which they divided us into groups of 5. The theme of the Herothon was to create an app for ChatGPT. With the mistakes from Junction Asia still fresh in my mind, I settle quickly into focusing on what needs to be done. With another talented team for the weekend, of Nicole, Nurland, Andrea, and Bogdan, we managed to come up with Nicole AI

Nicole AI accelerates market validation through a ChatGPT-powered reasoning engine.


Nurland did a fantastic job creating the Android and iOS app, Andrea came up with the business model, and Bogdan came up with the idea to name the project "Nicole AI".  When it came to the Herothon presentation, it was plagued with network issues, as the slides were not changing on the screen during pitch. However, Nicole, a talented young pitcher from Calgary, pulled through, and despite the technical difficulties, her firm voice managed to convey our message. We came in 1st place🥇

It was a great result, and it helped me remember what it was like to work with a good team which could execute. Unfortunately, we did not get an investment for Nicole AI, as it is hard to keep the momentum going for a hackathon team. Everyone has different priorities(as we all had our own startups, ideas and/or school to pursue), and different paths to walk. Ultimately, as a closing act, we made an application to Y Combinator, to see if we could keep the ball rolling...🏀

All in all, Draper University was a great experience, and now we can call ourselves proud DraperU Alumni🎓

We pledge to fail, fail, & fail again until we succeed💪

We all became Heroes🪄🦸‍♂️🦸‍♀️🤖🚀