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When Gleeks, Sting’s daughter and Kristen Wiig collide at TIFF

Fans react to actor Darren Criss (not seen) arriving on the red carpet for the gala presentation of the film "Imogene" at the 37th Toronto International Film Festival, September 7, 2012.


When the Gleeks come out to worship one of their idols, they come out in bunches with posters, playbills and even musical instruments. Oh, and thy all wear pink glasses.

In a crowd of about 300 fans at the Imogene red carpet, there were dozens of pink Wayfarer-esque glasses. These fans (most of them women) were there to see Darren Criss walk the red carpet for his first featured film. Criss, who plays Blaine Anderson in Glee, is starring – along with the funniest funny woman Kristen Wiig – in Imogene.

He plays a down-and-out singer who is a part of a Backstreet Boys cover band. Criss, who has a heck of a voice that has landed him several Broadway gigs, seemed to love the fan-demonium. Arriving late to the Ryerson Theatre, he spent much of his time signing things, hugging fans and posing. He even gave them a little dance, which was greeted with heavily hormonal cries from the crowd.

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"I absolutely love him," said Amanda Hailman, 23.

She and her twin sister were decked out in their own pink glasses. They were quick to share that the glasses are Criss's signature accessory. Named after a theatre group he is in, the "StarKid" glasses became popular after Criss's stint in A Very Potter Musical.

"We once went to New York and camped outside, all-night, in January to see him," said Mindy, Amanda's sister.

The twins were also treated to a slew of other celebrities, including mother-daughter team Trudie Styler and Mickey Sumner (whose father, it's worth noting, is Sting – and no, unfortunately, he was not in attendance).

"I am so proud of her," said Styler, who was a producer of the film. "And I do hope to work with her again, if I can catch her. She is so busy these days."

Another busy lady was Imogene's leading lady, Kristen Wiig. She did stop to take a minute and give some advice to struggling actors and comedians.

"Say 'no' as much as possible," she said. "Do what you think represents you."

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It seems to have worked for her so far!

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