So, well-known 1970s/80s band Status Quo have a movie out. A quick look at my iPod reveals that although I was alive for some of the 1970s and all of the 1980s, their presence is a hell of a lot smaller than, say, Def Leppard, William Shatner, Starship, Hanson, and various other artists a lot more embarrassing than even those, which I won’t mention here. In fact, they don’t feature on my iPod at all.
Nonetheless, despite two other Theatre events and Canada Day over in Trafalgar Square, here I am in Leicester Square with a camera in tow. Because I can.
Here’s how it went down.
Some premieres you get to Leicester Square by 6am just to be in the queue for wristbands to get a spot in the first few rows. Others it’s only about an hour and a half to go and the crowd is numbered under two dozen and they haven’t put up barriers nor looked inclined to lay out a carpet for. This premiere was one of the latter. Well… they can’t all be Man of Steel
Must have looked at the guest list and seen not one name, actor, celebrity or musician from within two decades of the year she was born. I can sympathise, Miss, but don’t look at me. I don’t know who any of these people are either.
Ah, to be standing downwind of chemical red carpet adhesive spray. I can feel my arteries already being unblocked by the gently healing corrosives!!
Carpet has been laid (woo!) and they’re handing out colourful hand-wavy circular fans, which is odd, as (a) it’s not hot, and (b) in contrast to the film which based on poster and decor is set in Fiji, these are inscribed with the message “Visit Korea”. Still, it’s free stuff, so the crowd responds.
Preparations for the premiere continue, and even security guards are given flowers. I suppose whether she’s wondering if it has any use to beat unruly autograph dealers with if they get too rowdy.
It’s ON! Or rather, it appeared at the time to Be On – two days after the premiere and still Wireimage and Getty Images have not identified who the gentlemen on the left, second from left and far right with the silver hair are, EVEN though they posed and EVEN though they got interviewed and EVEN though they signed autographs. I’ll let you know if/when I find out. Placeholder ID theory : they’re a concert metal/classical hybrid Chopin tribute band.
Presenter Lizzie Cundy is picked up in clear violation of Occupational Health and Safety regulations. On a side note, today I saw a 12yr old girl confidently walking along the top of a narrow and uneven brick wall much taller than she was, her mother offering assistance to her only whenever there were sudden changes in wall height. And you know what? That’s good parenting, Lady – don’t let anybody tell you otherwise. Where was I? Oh, right. Status Quo.
We’re slowly getting into the meat of this premiere, as things are set on fire and people are walking around without t-shirts on.
“So… without taking this the wrong way…. who are you and why are you here?”
I’d ordinarily take photos of red carpet photographers only so I can laugh at them as a way to distract from my deep-rooted jealousy over their access to events. But there’s a secondary reason. And it isn’t the shoes.
It’s Chris Tarrant!! (and in the time-honoured way I research some of these journals : Who Is Chris Tarrant??)
It’s Mark Whale, and I don’t know who Mark Whale is. But I have recently rediscovered the South Park episode where Cartman sings a version of Lady Gaga’s “Poker Face” about Japanese Whaling, and I like the way he says “Whaaaaaaale”. Accordingly, welcome, Mark Whaaaaaale.
I don’t know who this man is, but he got cheers and entreaties for autographs (and he wore a bow tie). As at two days after the premiere, Wireimage and Getty still hadn’t identified him.
If I didn’t know Andy Serkiss was the human responsible for the acting of Gollum in Lord of the Rings, I’d be remarking on this man’s incredible similarity in menace.
Excitingly, my efficiency is through the roof as I’m now taking photos of three people at once that I don’t know the names or Fame Status of.
As this premiere begins to descend into something so strange that it’s coalescing, coal-like into something that’s actually vitally important, these two ladies arrived, posed for the Paparazzi, and then went inside… and then five minutes later left by a side-exit, presumably to find better, more exciting events to pose in front of the Paparazzi at. Good luck in your venture, ladies.
“Are you famous, Miss?”
Laura Aikman is ACTUALLY IN THIS FILM (!!!) and wears upside down flowers even better than the dude wearing a baseball cap and checked t-shirt is wearing those items. She was also most recently photographed by me at the hateful premiere of the Keith Lemon Movie which also featured The Hoff, Billy Ocean, and Jedward. Well… when I say it was hateful, it was also variously awesome. In a “ground zero at the apocalypse” kind of way.
Unlike most of the people at this premiere, this gentleman is ALSO in the film : he’s Craig Fairbrass.
“You want me to make a face just like the one that you’ve got on the preview screen right now? Sir, I’m not sure you fully understand how that thing works”
Laura Aikman is probably the second (third?) prettiest Laura I know, but she is pretty. (And that expression of mild lack of concern is how I would have expected this particular Laura to respond to that comment)
“We’re maybe looking at a Bieber cameo in the sequel, but psst… don’t tell anybody”
Laura Aikman? Slowly rising to sold #2 on the “prettiest Lauras” countdown I’ve got going. Second prettiest blonde Laura, anyway. As for Rick Parfitt? I’m not sure where he is on the “Rick” countdown, but I would like to know what Rick Moranis is up to these days. He was great in Ghostbusters.
The two lead actors / Status Quo bandmembers Rick Parfitt and Francis Rossi pose in front of a sign summarising their film’s premise. As these things go, it’s no Man Of Steel. But then Man Of Steel was pretty disappointing in many ways. Like, as a movie, I mean..
The man on the red carpet with the Sitting Down method of taking photos? Shoots PENTAX. And not just Pentax (because I shoot Pentax) but Pentax Medium Format Digital. Which is not only enough to put a whole lot of DSLRs to shame in terms of 40 megapixels on a giant sensor (at 1 frame per 1.1 seconds), but is like bringing a hand grenade to a game of scissors-paper-rock. Albeit a very slow hand grenade….
Overall, to summarise : Unimpressed Wall remains UNIMPRESSED.
Still, I’m no wall and I somewhat enjoyed it, and also, The Archive of Premieres Ive Been To continues to grow, and its most recent additions were
Man of Steel – Cavill! Snyder! Nolan! Zimmer! Shannon! Adams!
Hummingbird – Jason Statham! Rosie H-W! Others
Much Ado About Nothing – Whedon! Hiddleston! Denisof!
The Hangover III – Cooper! Graham! Bartha! Jeong! Galifianakis
ps. The theorised Chopin tribute metal band was actually the band “Uriah Heep” which I’ve also not got any songs of in my iPod. Oh, well…