Toronto rolls out red carpet for 'Bill Murray Day'

Fri Sep 5, 2014 8:49pm EDT
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By Alastair Sharp

TORONTO (Reuters) - If there was ever a good reason to skip school, it might just be "Bill Murray Day."

The Toronto International Film Festival declared Friday "Bill Murray Day," and called on fans of the quirky comedic actor to dress up as his beloved characters in a costume contest to see screenings of films "Stripes," "Groundhog Day" and "Ghostbusters."

For two public sector workers and a barista dressed up as the three main characters from "Ghostbusters", the decision was a no-brainer.

The trio were first in line for a free screening of the classic comedy, decked out in authentic-looking jumpsuits and proton packs that unfortunately do not shoot anti-apparition projectiles.

"We're not at that stage with the technology. Maybe one day," said 25-year-old Solange Houle, the barista.

Organizers announced late Thursday that the famously elusive Murray would turn up for own day, much of which he spent in his hotel room receiving updates on the unusually sticky weather.

In an expansive conversation with Ghostbusters director Ivan Reitman, Murray skipped effortlessly between anecdotes from his early days working with the likes of John Belushi, Harold Ramis, Chevy Chase and Dan Akroyd, to philosophical musings on the importance of relaxation.

While filming Ghostbusters "I knew then that I was going to be rich and famous," he dead-panned, wearing red pants, a blue plaid shirt and trapper hat. "And be able to wear red clothes and not give a damn," he continued.   Continued...

Actor Bill Murray arrives following a screening of "Ghostbusters" at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) in Toronto, September 5, 2014.  REUTERS/Mark Blinch