Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem's Spanish soiree and Ben Stiller ribbing the Property Brothers

By Jen Kirsch

It was an aptly Spanish-themed premiere party for power couple Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem’s latest, Everybody Knows. Arriving at the RBC House five minutes apart, each star made what could collectively go down as the smoothest, most unsolicited entrance at any TIFF party that I ever did see. After Javier’s arrival at the invite-only affair, an observing few wondered if perhaps the Pirates of the Caribbean star had bailed, much like another of the evening’s A-listers (more to come on that!). But in slipped the Oscar winner, having traded her layers of Spanish-style Chanel lace for a slinkier black number, topped off with dazzling drop earrings.

Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem with Everybody Knows director Asghar Farhadi. Photo: © Ernesto Distefano, Getty Images for RBC

The room of execs and castmates at STORYS in the entertainment district seemed unfazed and no photos were flashed as Penelope posted up on the cozy couch in their corner booth noshing on food and Javier got comfy in convo with director Asghar Farhadi. A live, three-piece Spanish band and its instrumental rendition of, what else, “Despacito,” brought the film’s locale to life, and even Penelope’s shoulders were bopping when they took on Gnarls Barkley’s “Crazy.”

Ben Stiller was one of the famous waiters at APJ's glitzy gala. Photo: © Ryan Emberley

Susan Sarandonand Ben Stiller had the room in stitches during the 10th annual Artists for Peace and Justice gala at the Windsor Arms hotel, not only in the tradition of stars serving guests their suppers (Alan Cumming was also on the wait staff!) but at the podium, too. Ben made light of his height as the Hollywood pair honoured another dynamic duo with the Peace and Justice Award: towering Property Brothers Drew and Jonathan Scott. “What can’t they do?” exclaimed the Thelma & Louise star, before Ben quipped “jockey.” All jokes aside, a whopping $1.4 million was raised at the event, co-chaired by Natasha Koifman and Suzanne Boyd and benefitting education in Haiti. "We were raised with some very simple values," the twins said while accepting their award. "We call it the 'cowboy code.' We respect the land around us, we respect the animals on the farm and we respect our humans and neighbours, whether locally or globally."

At the Vanity Fair fete on the KOST rooftop at Bisha Hotel, Chloe Grace Moretz hopped into the David Yurman portrait studio with Geena Davis, fresh off her stint rallying the audience at the Share Her Journey event yesterday afternoon. As that party was winding down, a few blocks away, Grey Goose hosted the premiere 'do for Jason Reitman’sThe Front Runner, starring a frontrunner in his own right, Hugh Jackman. The actor appeared aptly at the stroke of 9pm, in what could be the most punctual appearance made by a lead at a TIFF party yet. He chatted with a few people involved in the film and took a few photos with fans before sneaking out the back door 40 minutes later.

Hugh Jackman charmed the crowds at his after-party. Photo: © Ernesto Distefano/Getty Images for RBC

Suits star Patrick J Adams was spotted taking in the scene while leaning against the bar sans his pregnant wife, Troian Bellisario. For those cast members seeking a pick-me-up of sorts while the fete was still in full swing, The Sequel – a cocktail that is best described as an espresso martini - was ordered, savoured and favoured. Urban legend has it that the drink is inspired by an OG supermodel in the 80’s who – at a London bar - asked for something that would “Wake me up and [mess] me up.”

Courtney B. Vance and Kathryn Newton toasted Ben Is Back. Photo: © Ernesto Distefano/Getty Images

Across the way, the Nespresso-hosted Ben is Back cast party was in full swing, though word on the street is that star Julia Roberts had to fly back home and was a no-show despite her confirmed attendance. Though invited guests were hoping to soak up her contagious energy, co-stars Kathryn Newton and Courtney B. Vance were on hand to toast their tense drama, for which solid reviews are already rolling in.

Maggie Gyllenhaal hung out in the secret garden at Mongrel House. Photo: © Getty Images for Mongrel Media

As that party wrapped another was in full swing over at Mongrel House, once again posted up in the historic Campbell House building, where Maggie Gyllenhaal had been spotted looking pretty in pink in the secret garden. I caught sight of Billy Zane on yet another grand staircase, leading him not to Rose DeWitt Bukater (Titanic, anyone?) but instead to a room where a live karaoke band was playing. Billy, who has made quite the consistent cameo at parties over the past few days in Toronto, was dressed for the city’s cold spell in full fall gear – cap, scarf and blazer.

Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper hung out with Sam Elliott at the Thompson Hotel. Photo: © Michael Loccisano/Getty Images

Newly minted movie star Lady Gaga made a glittering appearance at the Entertainment Weekly bash with boyfriend Christian Carino in tow while the annual InStyle and HFPAparty settled into its new venue at the swish Four Seasons hotel, and the buzz about town is that most of the big stars were seen strutting into soirees, snapping photos and then moving on to whatever was the next to-do on their agenda.

Follow along with us tonight on Twitter and Instagram for of-the-minute tidbits as we take you into what is always one of the hottest nights on the TIFF party circuit! Plus, check out our recap of night one here and night two here (spoiler: Natalie Portman reprised her SNL rap).

Don't miss a beat with HELLO! Canada's Daily Hits newsletter, your daily dose of royal and celebrity news, fashion, weddings and more. CLICK HERE to sign up for free!