12 Years a Slave premiere - McQueen! Ejiofor!

The premiere for Drinking Buddies had finished not an hour before, and off to the other end of Leicester Square I went for arguably the main draw of the evening (your view may differ if you’re a fan of Tom Hardy I suppose) – the immensely highly regarded “12 Years A Slave” directed by Steve McQueen who also directed “Shame” (which I saw and felt was pretty awesomely confronting). Here’s how that went down…


Two premieres in a day is a pretty good thing to step off a plane for (I’d like to say I lead a heavily jet-setting lifestyle, but if most of the week I was gone was spent in Framingham outside of Boston, so even I might think otherwise).


“If any of you can spell Chiwetel Ejiofor’s name without checking imdb you can get into the front row. Otherwise, stay the hell back while we set up”


Totally random duo of attendees : director Tom Hooper (The Kings Speech, Les Miserables ) and model/actress (as opposed to actress/model, I suppose) Lily Cole.


Lily Cole is probably best known for being a model, though she was also very good in The Imaginarium of Dr Parnassus (a movie I disliked if I’m honest). She also had a smaller role in Snow White and the Huntsman , which probably explains why she was at the premiere.


Please keep your distance and possibly avoid making direct eye contact with me if you don’t know why I’m pretty pleased that I’ve finally gotten to photograph Colm Meaney. He was excellent in The Damned United and memorable in ‘Con Air’, but he’s probably better known as Chief O’Brien in two different iterations of Star Trek (The Next Generation and Deep Space Nine). Yes, I’m still single.


“A Les Mis sequel? Only if we can work Russell Crowe into it somehow, and we’re working on that” prequel, I suppose. Or maybe I’m making that up.


Chiwetel Ejiofor has some pretty cool credits to his filmography – including Children of Men, American Gangster and Salt. Also Roland Emmerich’s “2012”, upon which your views may vary.


“Yeah, 2012 was pretty lame. But it cost $200million and made $770million at the box office, so I don’t think Roland is crying in his sleep so much about the Mayan hate mail”


Director Steve McQueen arrives, and he’ll thank you not to compare him to the other Steve McQueen, whose hair was an entirely different colour, and whose real first name was Terence.


“I was very proud to film all of Michael Fassbender in ‘Shame’, but dude I’m still not signing that” Shame is an excellent movie. Fairly full-on…. as in don’t-necessarily-sit-down-with-your-parents-and-watch-it, (or your young kids) but it’s very impressive.


“No I will not sign your hamburger. What’s wrong with you people?” Steve McQueen also directed ‘Hunger’, which is meant to be pretty awesome and harrowing, I’ve been told.


I’m so glad you’re holding your mobile phone in front of my camera. I can see that its autofocus is doing a stellar job. I’m not a DSLR snob… much..


You’re probably all “Lupita Nyong’o is WHO, now?” but you’re wrong – she’s off to play a character called ‘Gwen’ in the upcoming Liam Neeson movie ‘Non-Stop’. I’ve seen the poster. It’s got Liam sliding backwards/downwards holding a gun and everything, so I’m all in.


I’m pleased to say that changing my Nikon 50mm f1.4 for a 1.8 hasn’t diminished my ability to capture starbursts in photos. And if a movie star stands by it, then that’s just a bonus.


Damn starbursts. Feel like I’m in a JJ Abrams movie"


I’d like to think the security on either side of this arrangement of people are are guarding a very important and well designed (yet expensive) human art installation.


Had to go dutch tilt for this shot. It’s less ‘Art’ than necessity as the two girls in front of me proved slightly taller than I’d anticipated or they’d initially seemed.


“You brought that script treatment Anna Kendrick said ‘Hello No’ to? Hell yes we’re interested!”

So that’s two premieres down, one to go, and I’m already back from The Future where I’ve photographed another two premieres. I’m falling behind…

Still, it’s another movie for the Archive of Movie Premieres

Twitter : @berndt2_photo

Until next time / soon!

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