When we learned here on FERNTV that Ned Loach and Robert Gontier were no longer doing the theatre immersive experience called 360 Screenings, it was no doubt very disappointing.Â We came to terms with that because there is so much work involved that needs to be put in a successful theatre immersive experience on an already big personal workload on both Ned and Robert.Â The 360 Screenings managed to pulled off some gems while they lasted such as One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, AmeliÃ© and The Exorcist and these experiences were all so much fun, creative and still to this day an event that a lot of people have not yet to experience.
Along comes Jennifer Dysart and Bronwyn Cuthbertson who creates a new company called The Secret Sessions to bring that inspiring and creative fun that has been missing in Toronto for a couple of years.Â Bronwyn was inspired by The Secret Cinema group that brought the theatre immersive experience in London, England.Â Â Â Both Jennifer and Bronwyn wanted to create more of a community which is both their main motivation when creating The Secret Sessions.Â Whether it is theater lovers or movie lovers coming together, The Secret Sessions is all about establishing the connection amongst the people who attend this awesome event.
What happens at these events is that they don’t tell you what movie they will immerse you in and they do not tell you where the location is because of course that would kill “The Secret Session”.Â When we were notified to wear something that would resemble a ’70s broadcaster, we were surprised and excited here on FERNTV because there were several films that ran through our minds.Â Maybe they were doing the film Broadcast News, or perhaps even the film The China Syndrome but perhaps what all of us were hoping for when we were notified, was a film that has been one of the most highly quoted of all time.Â The film that we were thinking of was:Â Anchorman.
“Scotch, Scotch, Scotch.Â I love Scotch,” is all that we were saying in our heads before FERNTV walked into the secret location which ended up being on the corner of John St. and Adelaide.Â It was great to see everyone in “uniform” and seeing many old-school suits, moustaches and styles from the audience which made the event lively right from the beginning. Â The cast of the theatre immersive Anchorman divided the audience into groups to set up that classic fight scene amongst all the news channels in San Diego.Â Once we were divided we were given prop weapons to practice with.Â This was a great highlight of the experience because it got the audience loose and helped us to connect to one another and to the experience of Anchorman. Â This was a great way to build that community that both Jennifer and Bronwyn foresaw when creating this event.
There were many different highlights that stood in this episode of The Secret Sessions.Â We really enjoyed the acting of Steve Hobbs who plays Ron Burgundy who is played by Will Ferrell.Â Everyone in the world could quote the voice of Will Ferrell’s Ron Burgundy but not everyone could portray him and kudos to Steve Hobbs in partaking in a precious and pressured role.Â We also really enjoyed the acting of Will Conlon who plays Brick Tamland who is played by Steve Carell and we kept on laughing here on FERNTV about his resemblance for the role.Â When we looked at the wall unit with the Black Panther cologne within the set design which sets up one of the funniest scenes in Anchorman, we were again impressed and much credit had to go to the set designer Ming Wong who also set up the newsroom.
The Secret Sessions inaugural event was a great experience and surprised and inspired us all with their theatre immersive experience of Anchorman.Â To do a film that is an instant comedy classic is very difficult especially when there are many big shoes to fill such as Ron Burgundy.Â To do it on the week of the U.S. presidential election where everyone in the world is frustrated and angered on Donald Trump’s win is what made this episode of The Secret Sessions that much more memorable.Â We all needed to laugh a little and forget about what has just happened and to relax and have a little fun.Â Everyone at The Secret Sessions made this happen and we cannot wait what they will think of next.Â Hey, it’s not so bad to be a San Diegoan or a San Diegan for a little bit.