Kevin Smith gives a preview of his new movie, Clerks III. He also held a Q & A with the audience after the screening. Photo credit: Ellen Bond

Kevin Smith, director and writer of the latest Clerks sequel, says his movies have inspired people to take a risk and pursue their dreams.

“Film Twitter calls me an idiot, but I have people come up to me in the streets to tell me the impact my movies have had on them,” Smith said on Oct. 13 in the Algonquin Commons Theatre, answering a question during a screening event for Clerks III.

“I was inspired by Richard Linklater’s Slacker. The first time I watched it, I saw it with awe because I had never seen anything like that before, it was a mixture of magic. Clerks is the movie that launched 1000 ships because it was deceptively simple. You watch it thinking, ‘This guy is just talking to his friend, I can just do that,’ and you can. I have met all sorts of people who were inspired in general by my work when all I wanted to do was make the audience laugh.”

The “Clerks III: The Convenience Tour” stopped by the Algonquin Commons Theatre, where Smith showed his latest Clerks movie and held a Q & A.

The movie marks the return of store clerks Dante and Randall, as well as the iconic duo of Jay and Silent Bob who had not been on the big screen for 16 years.

The movie starts with Randall surviving a heart attack, which gave him an epiphany to make a movie based on his life. The movie blends meta commentary on how Clerks was made, nostalgia-filled moments, and an emotional ending filled with both hilarity and heartbreak. The movie serves as the perfect send-off to the characters that made Smith a star.

The event started with Smith taking the stage to introduce Clerks III. He talked about how much making this movie meant to him and how Algonquin was the halfway mark of the tour. He also shared a story about exploring Ottawa and how a guy on campus confused him for Brent Butt, the creator of the show Corner Gas, and how the show getting cancelled made him really sad. That really got the audience laughing.

After the movie, the audience got an hour and a half to ask questions. Smith was generous with his time by staying longer than intended to answer everyone’s question. Smith’s amusing stories captivated the audience.

His stories explained the creation of certain characters in the movie, and it involved his friendship with Ben Affleck.

Smith reflected on his career of almost 30 years and shared how a producer got him to change the original ending of Clerks, where Dante is shot and killed in a robbery, because it was too sad.

Smith also talked about potential film projects that he has in the works, such as Mallrats 2 and Moose Jaws.