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

From fire to awards: wild week for Similkameen winery

Roller coaster of a week for the owners at Forbidden Fruit Winery in Cawston

MPs hear retired Penticton nurse’s petition to change compensation for fatal medical errors

Teri McGrath wants provinces to implement no-fault system for medical errors

Unexpected snow on Okanagan Connector, Pennask Summit

As of 6:50 a.m. DriveBC cameras displayed surprise snowfall on highway

Okanagan-Shuswap weather: chance of rain

Environment Canada is calling for a risk of thunderstorms tonight

Oliver man sentenced to 18 months for two firearm offences

Waylon Faulhafer prohibited from possessing a firearm for life and issued DNA order

VIDEO: Weekday weather update for the Okanagan Valley

Snow is expected on the Okanagan connector and thunderstorms across the Valley

Billboard posted along B.C.’s Highway of Tears to remember missing and murdered Indigenous women

Billboards featuring Indigenous artwork to be placed in Surrey, Kamloops and near Prince George

Spikeball tournament sets up for Okanagan summer

The tournament for the four-player beach game comes July 13 in Kelowna

Driver loses tire while behind the wheel after lug-nut thief strikes in Burnaby

Burnaby RCMP are investigating after two reports of lug-nut tampering in the city this month

Federal cabinet ministers visit Edmonton, Calgary, in wake of TMX approval

Natural Resources Minister Amarjeet Sohi is set to visit Trans Mountain Corp.’s terminal in Edmonton

B.C. municipality prepares to forbid overnight camping by homeless despite court ruling

While courts have ruled against blanket bans, Langley City is employing a site-by-site approach

B.C. auditor says Indigenous grad rate highest ever but education gaps exist

The percentage of Indigenous students graduating from B.C. public high schools has hit its highest level ever

Statistics Canada reports annual pace of inflation rises in May to 2.4%

Transportation prices gained 3.1 per cent as the cost of air transportation added 8.9 per cent

Beekeepers from Argentina find sweet success in Shuswap

Honey Onyx Apiary is hoping to increase its operations by 200 hives this year

Most Read