Colin Farrell helps Toronto homeless man
CTV.ca News Staff
Published Thursday, September 13, 2007 11:19PM EDT
Colin Farrell usually plays the hero in Hollywood films, but the Irish actor became a real-life hero to a homeless man in Toronto this week.
On Tuesday, Farrell took the man on a $2,100 shopping spree. The actor, who told CTV's eTalk that the homeless man is "a friend of mine," walked into a Toronto store with his arm around his pal. He then bought the man, whose street name is "Stress," waterproof jackets, pants, boots, and even socks.
"The homeless guy was grabbing ... whatever he wanted," Dave Mott, manager of Europe Bound, an outdoor gear store on King Street, told CTV Toronto.
"Colin was walking around with the guy and doing the same thing -- grabbed a sleeping bag and back pack, came back down and grabbed more clothing."
Mott told CTV Newsnet that "they seemed like they were really good friends and they were best buddies, like they've known each other for years."
Mott says Farrell made it absolutely clear: "Get him what he wants, get him the best."
But that's not all. Farrell also tried to help "Stress" get off the street. Following the shopping spree, the two friends walked to a bank machine where Farrell withdrew $830. Farrell then handed "Stress" the money so he could rent a room to get off the street. It would help the man cover first and last month's rent.
Farrell met "Stress" four years ago when he was in Toronto shooting a movie. Back then, he helped "Stress" win a $2,000 prize. A Toronto-area radio station had offered the prize to anyone who brought the actor to their studio. Farrell heard about the contest and found "Stress" on the street and took him to the station to claim the prize.
Steven Lomoth, a Toronto street person who sells newspapers, told CTV Toronto he was happy for Stress and impressed with Farrell's generosity.
"Today I can't buy enough papers. I've been through 50 papers already because of Colin Farrell and what he did. He made someone famous today and he's one of us. I'm very happy for the man and I hope he doesn't come back out here."
John Mourtzis, the limousine driver who was chauffeuring Farrell on the day he took Stress shopping, said it shows what kind of a person he really is.
"He proved he's an awesome guy," Mourtzis said.
It appears Farrell may be getting into the habit of giving a helping hand to strangers.
"I ended up talking to his publicist," says Mott. "Apparently, he does this quite a bit."
Farrell is currently promoting his new film "Cassandra's Dream." The film, directed by Woody Allen, premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival on Tuesday.
With a report from CTV Toronto's Chris Eby