In Photos: Geeking Out at Toronto Comic-Con

Torontoist

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In Photos: Geeking Out at Toronto Comic-Con

Degrassi Junior High's original cast members discuss how they got lucky.

Fans of comics, fantasy, anime, cosplay, and gaming were on display all weekend long at Toronto ComiCon at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.

There was no shortage of costumes, comic books, and merchandise. Fans got up close and personal with celebrities for pictures and autographs.

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Five original cast members from Degrassi Junior High reunited at Toronto ComiCon for a nostalgic discussion with fans to mark the 30th anniversary of the influential series.

For all his charisma on screen as Joey Jeremiah, Degrassi star Pat Mastroianni told a crowded room that his acting career was a fluke.

Mastroianni said he was one of hundreds of children to sign up for the chance to audition for Degrassi Junior High in the late 80s, but might’ve been the only one to do so at his school aged 13, where a casting form could be picked up at the principal’s office after school.

“I was this close to taking a job at the City of York as a caretaker. I was ready to give up on acting,” Mastroianni said. “When [casting] called back and said I had the job, I also got a letter for a second interview from York.”

“It was a tough decision,” Mastroianni said to a smattering of chuckles.

About 250 fans of all ages attended the reunion panel for the 30th anniversary of the show’s TV debut, featuring original cast members Stefan Brogren (Snake), Stacie Mistysyn (Caitlin), Kirsten Bourne (Tessa), and Dan Woods (Mr. Raditch).

Mastroianni wasn’t the only one in the right place at the right time for Degrassi. Bourne says she was a fan of the series before she was cast on the show.

She was just another fan standing in line at the Royal Ontario Museum to collect autographs from the cast of The Kids of Degrassi Street when a publicist spotted her, and offered an audition, she said.

Good fortune seemed a theme of the panel, with the cast appearing grateful and surprised that so many fans showed up, Degrassi-themed T-shirts and all.

Stefan Brogren said, “What we were doing was only the best most coolest awesome summer job in the world. It was supposed to last two years. It was a mistake that it was a hit.”

Before they wrapped, Mastroianni kept good on his word to sing the “Zit Remedy” song with the room.

With that, class was dismissed.

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