NOTE : If this journal is blank, then once again I’ve been 5crewed by my photo-hoster-of-convenience Facebook. However, should you feel the need, the photos are ALSO LOCATED HERE FOR YOU TO ENJOY
Ah… the Avengers. I’m not a fan of comic books generically (my geeky nature never swung that way), but as a fan of hype and spectacle I am…not unaware of the fact that movies to Iron Man, The Hulk, Thor, etc exist, with the end aim of setting up a hypergiant film combining the various marvel properties. Some of them were good, some of them were bad, but this one? Looks pretty epic.
How epic? Let’s just say I took a day off work for this one, got up at 4am and was on the first tube. Obsessed? Not so much.. though the fact that Scarlett Johansson was meant to attend might have had more than a little to do with all that.
How did it go down? Was it worth it? Well.. let’s just say 2,300 photos were taken.
It’s a premiere, and I’ve taken the day off. I joined the queue outside the place around 6:15, but they let us in around an hour later. This was my vantagepoint as at 8:00am (two rows back, but the girls (!) in front of me are short). I’d previously been on the left from 7:30am, but things changed so I had to move. So.. 2hrs down, 9 to go, huh?
At least there were people making things interesting as we counted down the hours. 8. 7. 6. 5. 4. 3. …
Eventually it filled up. But this was only with about two hours or so to go.
“So do you have trouble getting into and out of taxis with that thing?” With about 2 hours to go, it was a standing crush until 5:30pm when they started with a dressup competition. Which not many films do.
But ultimately all the waiting (and watching the 2.5 minute trailer every five minutes for about 11 hours) was over, and we were under way. Only Director Joss Whedon, and actors Samuel L Jackson and Chris Evans of the primary cast were unable to attend, we were told….
The giant mural behind the buy opens up at Iron Man’s hands and dispenses stars one by one to the cheers of the waiting crowd. The high-contrast LEDs behind the idea are going to be tricky enough WITHOUT camerapeople from a centre media pen getting up on chairs. Eek.
“I briefly rocked a ponytail like that, but my wife couldn’t stop laughing for a week. Then she divorced me”. So… first up : Australia’s own Chris Hemsworth, aka Thor.
Chris Hemsworth’s wife is heavily pregnant, my keen knowledge of the female anatomy tells me, …. and my choice of crop somewhat obscures. (it’s a respect thing)
“Hello future loyal slaves!!” Here is your lord and liberator, Tom Hiddleston, aka Loki, the Norse God of Mischief, the main antagonist of the film. And fortunately the camera people have gotten off their chairs!
Loki says : “My armies will be destroying a city near you soon”
Actor Tom Hiddleston isn’t really the most naturally evil-looking person in the world. But he is a good actor. And apparently good reader of erotic poetry. I have been told.
Still on the subject of peace and/or gang signs… is Mark Ruffalo, who is neither Eric Bana nor Ed Norton nor entirely Computer Graphics as The Hulk / Bruce Banner in this film.
“You’re funny and you’re short and you smell funny and your hair looks weird. Are you getting angry yet? If you turn into the hulk and trash the place the fans will lap it up. I’m just saying!”.
And then Robert Downey Jnr showed up in his usual restrained way. (Did he get the biggest cheer of the night? Hm… maybe Thor and Loki got slightly more, but we’re talking degrees of deafness here, not crickets chirping for ANY of the attendees)
“Hey, it’s me! Looking good”. Something tells me that Robert Downey Jnr doesn’t find it a stretch playing billionaire playboy Tony Stark.
“Kids, be like this guy – build your own weaponised battle suit. The US Government totally won’t mind. Also, stay in school and don’t do drugs” Good advice from RDJ.
Next up, Clark Gregg, who has played Agent Phil Coulson in about four of the feeder films for the Avengers franchise. Most of the nearby ladiez were saying something about Sex in the City, but I wasn’t listening.
Clark Gregg is apparently married to Jennifer Grey of “Dirty Dancing” fame?? (I was listening..)
If the look is “Magnum” or “Blue Steel” then it must be either Derek Zoolander; or Jeremy Renner who plays the archer Hawkeye in the film.
“Jeremy Renner jus’ gonna slide ovah heah if y’all wanna see.. no?”
“Okay, then. Maybe Jeremy will just stand here until somebody pays attention, yeah?” fun with noted actors and a disarmingly loud crowd.
And then…. so Scarlett Johansson showed up, making me (a) very happy (b) that my camera has 7 frames per second and © a nice long telephoto zoom. Also, on a separate note, it now makes director Chris Nolan the new person I now rank #1 on my list of People I Really Want To Photograph That I Haven’t Yet. Scarlett Johansson has occupied the #1 spot since 2008 after I photographed Charlize Theron at my very first London Premiere for “Hancock”.
That high-contrast LED background does attract the Pentax’s autofocus, but on the subject of “Must Get Good Photo Of Scarlett Johansson At All Costs” we’re off to a promising start.
Host says : “I…. I have nothing. Please marry me”. Hey, no fair. That’s TOTALLY my line! Guess I’ll be going with ‘stoic, enigmatic silence with camera’ when she gets near us to sign. That was always my fallback anyway. (I’m tragically single, did I mention? It doesn’t matter)
“She’s been doing that mannequin pose for 15 minutes now, isn’t she great? Give her a round of applause everybody!”
So, as Ms Johansson winds her way along the crowd towards the obscured-from-my-vantagepoint paparazzi pen and I start thinking seriously about changing to a short-range lens, the telezoom stays on for now, for the impossibly awesomely named “Cobie Smulders” who plays agent Maria Hill in the film (psstt…. she’s on the mural on the left)
Meanwhile, Scarlett Johansson has moved into our area and the crush of people pushing forward might put wildebeest stampedes to shame. This is not as close as I generally want to be when taking photos. (when being around Scarlett Johansson, yes. When taking photos, no)
I, meanwhile, may have found my favourite photo of about 70 taken at 7fps. I won’t bore you with the full sequence yet. But, you know… 11 hours of waiting kind of can be worthwhile… I call this photo Scarlett and I’ve got an 18×12 inch enlargement, framed, at home. Looks pretty awesome (But I say that as a fan more than a photographer!)
“Many people say you should add milk for consistency, but that’s both a mistake and mainly to do with omelettes. Where were we?” Kevin Feige was one of NINE producers on this film…. but weirdly in the credits he’s the only one NOT an EXECUTIVE PRODUCER. I have no idea what that means. And I have no opinion on omelettes.
Meanwhile… I have only some idea what this means, but only if I discount the expression on the face of the guy on the right.
“Your Hair Looks Stupid”
“YOUR Hair Looks MORE Stupid”
“I’m telling our Dad on you” on-screen brothers Loki and Thor meet in front of the press pen. Punches are not thrown. (Actually they seem like good friends)
Jeremy Renner was in Mission Impossible 4 and will starring in the upcoming fourth Bourne film. The smooth-jazz career may remain on hold for longer…
At this point in the proceedings our new compere (what was wrong with the old compere? He was funny.. although he was kind of swooning over Scarlett Johansson which is kind of the role I’d earmarked for myself and now couldn’t because that’d be like girls wearing the same dress to a prom or something)… where was I?
Our NEW compere Jonathan Ross is big enough in the field of entertainment that each of the actors are called back on stage to be interviewed briefly. I should probably check my batteries and card to see whether they can sustain much more of this.
“Chris’ wife is pregnant and due any day now, which means they had intercourse”. Yeah, and unlike my unsanctioned comments for the rest of the journal… Jonathan Ross actually said this! (Chris took it well – the laughing shots are a couple of frames later after Ross finished talking)
Jonathan Ross: “I … I have nothing. But will you marry me? I know, I know, I’m already married and my wife is quite wealthy, but I think between the three of us we could make it work. Take this discussion off-stage? Sure…”
One last Johansson photo. Pretty. So very pretty. 11 hours of waiting and a day of annual leave taken to do so. Worth it? Once I get full mobility in my legs and back again after the crush, probably!!
The Avengers Assemble on the stage as a group. Okay, Fine… I’ll watch the movie. 11 hours of that trailer will eventually wear a man down anyway. Premiere? Over. 1.5hr trip home to start editing photos for 4 or so hours? Just beginning.
That was insane. Would I do it again? Maybe. Would I do it for any other film? Maybe not immediately.
Still, it was worth it as premiere photography goes. The full set of shots turned out pretty good and this journal could have been a LOT longer.
Until next time!
Definitely one for the Archive of Movie Premieres