The 2017 Empire Movie Awards

19th March, 2017.

Unlike all prior years, this year's Empire Movie Awards were at the Camden Roundhouse, a venue I've never photographed outside. I got there late, my number wasn't tremendous, and I got a spot in the second row of a pen infested with the finest autograph dealers you'd ever want innoculations against the diseases of.

Here's how it went down (now updated to note winners!):

The roundhouse in Camden is, indeed, not rectangular-shaped.

The roundhouse in Camden is, indeed, not rectangular-shaped.

The sponsor of The Empire Awards used to be an alcohol brand, i think, but now it's a phone company. Not sure it's a more socially acceptable sponsor : I've worked for two telcos myself... as for Empire Readers' capacity to judge quality filmmaking? Well, that's open to discussion.

The sponsor of The Empire Awards used to be an alcohol brand, i think, but now it's a phone company. Not sure it's a more socially acceptable sponsor : I've worked for two telcos myself... as for Empire Readers' capacity to judge quality filmmaking? Well, that's open to discussion.

How big are the Empire Awards? Well, they've written a Bible about it, and bound its pages together with the finest aluminium staple money can buy. But, and I'll get this out of the way early, let's just say Disney's Rogue One : A Star Wars Story was awarded their movie of the year. Uh... take that, Moonlight and LaLaLand? And Finding Dory won best animated feature? And Deadpool won best screenplay??? WOWSERS, Empire. Some of those aren't so much bold calls as head-scratching ones.

How big are the Empire Awards? Well, they've written a Bible about it, and bound its pages together with the finest aluminium staple money can buy. But, and I'll get this out of the way early, let's just say Disney's Rogue One : A Star Wars Story was awarded their movie of the year. Uh... take that, Moonlight and LaLaLand? And Finding Dory won best animated feature? And Deadpool won best screenplay??? WOWSERS, Empire. Some of those aren't so much bold calls as head-scratching ones.

The List for this event runs for more than four pages. And file note for forensic scientists : that's not my left hand

The List for this event runs for more than four pages. And file note for forensic scientists : that's not my left hand

"I didn't know his face was that small...." "Those photos aren't 1:1 scale, Bob"

"I didn't know his face was that small...."
"Those photos aren't 1:1 scale, Bob"

"What do you mean 'Tom Hiddleston *MIGHT* be showing up to this thing'?? MIGHT isn't good enough for my readers, Jeremy!! Might doesn't get me Facebook likes, JEREMY!!"

"What do you mean 'Tom Hiddleston *MIGHT* be showing up to this thing'?? MIGHT isn't good enough for my readers, Jeremy!! Might doesn't get me Facebook likes, JEREMY!!"

I don't know who this is, but the brushed aluminium look of his jacket deserves further investigation. (edited to add : Dean-Charles Chapman, who is in Game of Thrones as Tommen Barratheon)

I don't know who this is, but the brushed aluminium look of his jacket deserves further investigation. (edited to add : Dean-Charles Chapman, who is in Game of Thrones as Tommen Barratheon)

"My pout? It's 82% Insouciance, 12% Blue Steel, and the eyebrows make up the balance" (edited to add : I don't know who this is)

"My pout? It's 82% Insouciance, 12% Blue Steel, and the eyebrows make up the balance" (edited to add : I don't know who this is)

"Indeed, this IS the hand I use to type almost half of all the novels I write!" Our first major arrival is a pretty big deal, actually : author Neil Gaiman

"Indeed, this IS the hand I use to type almost half of all the novels I write!" Our first major arrival is a pretty big deal, actually : author Neil Gaiman

"Just so you know, I usually typemy manuscripts, so my signature is a fairly unrepresentative font.."

"Just so you know, I usually typemy manuscripts, so my signature is a fairly unrepresentative font.."

"Is that photographer trying to intimidate me? It's working" - Dave Johns won the award for Best Male Newcomer for "I, Daniel Blake"

"Is that photographer trying to intimidate me? It's working" - Dave Johns won the award for Best Male Newcomer for "I, Daniel Blake"

"No gang signs, please, Walter. You know how much they vex me"

"No gang signs, please, Walter. You know how much they vex me"

"Tilt it a little more, if you could. A little more....  A little more... oh, wait. Or I could tilt this camera" - I have photographed actress Emily Berrington once before, at the premiere of "Inbetweeners 2"

"Tilt it a little more, if you could. A little more....  A little more... oh, wait. Or I could tilt this camera" - I have photographed actress Emily Berrington once before, at the premiere of "Inbetweeners 2"

"The tie is actually a visual effect, guys" - Gareth Edwards directed both Godzilla (2014) and Rogue One (whose "not-a-premiere" last year either one of Disney or Pentax owes me a replacement camera for, by my reckoning)

"The tie is actually a visual effect, guys" - Gareth Edwards directed both Godzilla (2014) and Rogue One (whose "not-a-premiere" last year either one of Disney or Pentax owes me a replacement camera for, by my reckoning)

"What do I think about the crass commercialism and sponsorship of film awards? Guys, I directed a star wars film for Disney, what do YOU think?" Appropriately, and in stark contrast to the opinions of many lesser (?) awards as (say) the Oscars, the Baftas, and the Directors Guild, it was Gareth Edwards who won the Best Director Award at the event. No problem, Empire. I actually (genuinely) rate Rogue One as my fourth favourite Star Wars movie (and felt LaLaLand was somewhat less than promised)

"What do I think about the crass commercialism and sponsorship of film awards? Guys, I directed a star wars film for Disney, what do YOU think?" Appropriately, and in stark contrast to the opinions of many lesser (?) awards as (say) the Oscars, the Baftas, and the Directors Guild, it was Gareth Edwards who won the Best Director Award at the event. No problem, Empire. I actually (genuinely) rate Rogue One as my fourth favourite Star Wars movie (and felt LaLaLand was somewhat less than promised)

The 2017 Empire Movie Awards. Come for the hair-swishingly great photo of Hayley Atwell, stay for the manically crazed look of the lady standing behind her.

The 2017 Empire Movie Awards. Come for the hair-swishingly great photo of Hayley Atwell, stay for the manically crazed look of the lady standing behind her.

"I think i'll sign ths as .... Eddie Redmayne.."

"I think i'll sign ths as .... Eddie Redmayne.."

"My eyes - and indeed most of my body - is up here, bro" - Hermione Corfield was in 2015's Mission Impossible Rogue Nation (and its premiere), as well as the most recent xXx movie.

"My eyes - and indeed most of my body - is up here, bro" - Hermione Corfield was in 2015's Mission Impossible Rogue Nation (and its premiere), as well as the most recent xXx movie.

"Over there. That's the spot where Tom Hiddleston is going to be standing, later"

"Over there. That's the spot where Tom Hiddleston is going to be standing, later"

"He's over there isn't he? He's better dressed than I am, isn't he?" (edited to add : I don't know who this is)

"He's over there isn't he? He's better dressed than I am, isn't he?" (edited to add : I don't know who this is)

"The missing lace for the centrepiece? I'll never tell!" - Stefanie Martini stars in 'Prime Suspect 1973', something that confuses me as I've never heard of it, and also she doesn't look like she's old enough. And I'm not that drunk that I can't do maths.

"The missing lace for the centrepiece? I'll never tell!" - Stefanie Martini stars in 'Prime Suspect 1973', something that confuses me as I've never heard of it, and also she doesn't look like she's old enough. And I'm not that drunk that I can't do maths.

"I did shave. I shaved fifteen minutes ago. And I was wearing a tie. Also fifteen minutes ago". Daniel Mays was in Atonement, The Adventures of Tintin and Rogue One, but I last photographed him last year at the 'Dad's Army' premiere.

"I did shave. I shaved fifteen minutes ago. And I was wearing a tie. Also fifteen minutes ago". Daniel Mays was in Atonement, The Adventures of Tintin and Rogue One, but I last photographed him last year at the 'Dad's Army' premiere.

Testament to my skillz with the ladiez, I've made eye contact and all I can thnk is : I don't know your name and I don't know what movie you've been in. And it doesn't occur to me that she can provide me with that.

Testament to my skillz with the ladiez, I've made eye contact and all I can thnk is : I don't know your name and I don't know what movie you've been in. And it doesn't occur to me that she can provide me with that.

"I don't care if you've forgotten your camera : you take that photo as if you brought it, Sam"

"I don't care if you've forgotten your camera : you take that photo as if you brought it, Sam"

"And then I was all 'Amagah!! You were in that movie!!". And then I realised it was realy uncool to be gushing like that. But I don't think he knew who I was, so I told him I was Eddie Redmayne, and it hasn't hurt his career any" - Joe Dempsie is best known for 'Skins' but he is also in / will be / was in Game of Thrones (depending on when you're reading this)

"And then I was all 'Amagah!! You were in that movie!!". And then I realised it was realy uncool to be gushing like that. But I don't think he knew who I was, so I told him I was Eddie Redmayne, and it hasn't hurt his career any" - Joe Dempsie is best known for 'Skins' but he is also in / will be / was in Game of Thrones (depending on when you're reading this)

"I like the badge. Subtle" - Director Ben Wheatley directed such films as (and was at such premieres as those for) "High-Rise" and "Free Fire"

"I like the badge. Subtle" - Director Ben Wheatley directed such films as (and was at such premieres as those for) "High-Rise" and "Free Fire"

"That's my identical twin bodyguard behind me. Or, on those days I can't be bothered to direct my movies, I'm that guys indentical twin bodyguard" - JA Bayona directed both 'The Impossible' with Ewan MacGregor and Naomi Watts, and more recently "A Monster Calls"

"That's my identical twin bodyguard behind me. Or, on those days I can't be bothered to direct my movies, I'm that guys indentical twin bodyguard" - JA Bayona directed both 'The Impossible' with Ewan MacGregor and Naomi Watts, and more recently "A Monster Calls"

"All the interesting people are wearing glasses and picking things out of their teeth behind me, aren't they?" - Lewis MacDougall was also in "A Monster Calls", as well as the not-quite-a-franchise-at-this-point 'Pan'

"All the interesting people are wearing glasses and picking things out of their teeth behind me, aren't they?" - Lewis MacDougall was also in "A Monster Calls", as well as the not-quite-a-franchise-at-this-point 'Pan'

"Smile at each of these guys. Except for the guy at the end. He's going to be crushed when he finds out you're not Ryan Gosling"

"Smile at each of these guys. Except for the guy at the end. He's going to be crushed when he finds out you're not Ryan Gosling"

I don't know who this is, and this saddens me greatly.  

I don't know who this is, and this saddens me greatly.
 

I still don't know who this is, and I'm happy to keep looking at the photo rather than check imdb or getty or wireimage or something. I mean, what are they going to tell me - that she's married and has six kids? Why would I want to know THAT??? (Edited to add : she's Sophie Skelton, and she was in "Another Mother's Son" which had its premiere last week, and I didn't photograph her there, and this ALSO saddens me greatly)

I still don't know who this is, and I'm happy to keep looking at the photo rather than check imdb or getty or wireimage or something. I mean, what are they going to tell me - that she's married and has six kids? Why would I want to know THAT???
(Edited to add : she's Sophie Skelton, and she was in "Another Mother's Son" which had its premiere last week, and I didn't photograph her there, and this ALSO saddens me greatly)

"Are you wearing a second tie behind your first?? I'm not sure I'm authorised to allow that.."

"Are you wearing a second tie behind your first?? I'm not sure I'm authorised to allow that.."

"I haven't blinked since June 2012, so bring it on" (edited to add : I don't know who this is. and I didn't see her blink)

"I haven't blinked since June 2012, so bring it on" (edited to add : I don't know who this is. and I didn't see her blink)

"I think the design of the dress-cover is "pixel-top" but I'm not sure what the hairstyle is called" - I last photographed Charlotte Riley at the premiere of "In The Heart of the Sea" in 2015.

"I think the design of the dress-cover is "pixel-top" but I'm not sure what the hairstyle is called" - I last photographed Charlotte Riley at the premiere of "In The Heart of the Sea" in 2015.

I actaully don't know who this is, and my internet connection is patchy right now, and the Empire Gallery is rather large (and I'm hungry and there are wolves out....)

I actaully don't know who this is, and my internet connection is patchy right now, and the Empire Gallery is rather large (and I'm hungry and there are wolves out....)

"No, I'm not scared. I just don't want that backing wall to do to my suit what it just did to the dress of the lady behind me!" (edited to add : I don't know who this is) (edited to edit to add : it's Augustus Prew from Ben Wheatley's "Free Fire" - with thanks to Valentina/Val83 on twitter!)

"No, I'm not scared. I just don't want that backing wall to do to my suit what it just did to the dress of the lady behind me!" (edited to add : I don't know who this is)
(edited to edit to add : it's Augustus Prew from Ben Wheatley's "Free Fire" - with thanks to Valentina/Val83 on twitter!)

Me : Pentax is a totally legitimate brand, ma'am. Amma Asante directed both the excellent not-associated-with-the-Disney-property-"Belle" in 2014 and more recently "A United Kingdom".

Me : Pentax is a totally legitimate brand, ma'am.
Amma Asante directed both the excellent not-associated-with-the-Disney-property-"Belle" in 2014 and more recently "A United Kingdom".

I'm not blnking either. IN fact, in 8 out of 10 alternative universes we're both still standing here , neither of us bliking, with security wondering if they should ask us to move on because the event ended hours ago. (She's Lily Travers, best known for being in (and at the premieres of) "Kingsman : The Secret Service" and "Me Before You".

I'm not blnking either. IN fact, in 8 out of 10 alternative universes we're both still standing here , neither of us bliking, with security wondering if they should ask us to move on because the event ended hours ago. (She's Lily Travers, best known for being in (and at the premieres of) "Kingsman : The Secret Service" and "Me Before You".

"I didn't vote for Finding Dory" - and hopefully I'm not alone in having found non-winner 'Kubo and the Two Strings' beautifully animated but pretty badly written and sometimes appallingly acted. One of the category nominees "Your Name" was amazing, though, and in contrast to The Academy, Empire actually recognied it (woohoo!)

"I didn't vote for Finding Dory" - and hopefully I'm not alone in having found non-winner 'Kubo and the Two Strings' beautifully animated but pretty badly written and sometimes appallingly acted. One of the category nominees "Your Name" was amazing, though, and in contrast to The Academy, Empire actually recognied it (woohoo!)

"Never fake a bald head, son. The ladiez can tell if it's not the real thing" - Sir Patrick Stewart was great in the recent films "Logan" and "Green Room" (neither of which, sadly, had premieres). I think I last photographed him at the premiere of Mr Holmes.

"Never fake a bald head, son. The ladiez can tell if it's not the real thing" - Sir Patrick Stewart was great in the recent films "Logan" and "Green Room" (neither of which, sadly, had premieres). I think I last photographed him at the premiere of Mr Holmes.

"Yours is Real". Damn straight. Much as I might make light of the Empire Awards and who they give awards to, they gave Patrick Stewart the "Empire Legend" Award, and that's very cool.

"Yours is Real". Damn straight. Much as I might make light of the Empire Awards and who they give awards to, they gave Patrick Stewart the "Empire Legend" Award, and that's very cool.

"And please don't call me 'P-Stewz'"

"And please don't call me 'P-Stewz'"

Weirdest family portrait ever. (Centre : actress Anne-Marie Duff).

Weirdest family portrait ever. (Centre : actress Anne-Marie Duff).

"Can't talk. Those girls over there are saying they want me, and I want to interrupt them before they can modify that with talk of selfies and autographs..." - Dan Stevens is best known for bein in Downton Abbey, and the latest Disney Nostalgia Cashgrab, the live-action "Beauty & The Beast". Maybe it's good - I haven't seen it.

"Can't talk. Those girls over there are saying they want me, and I want to interrupt them before they can modify that with talk of selfies and autographs..." - Dan Stevens is best known for bein in Downton Abbey, and the latest Disney Nostalgia Cashgrab, the live-action "Beauty & The Beast". Maybe it's good - I haven't seen it.

"Damn straight my scarf is better than your scarf. Even in black'n'white, lady" - director Dexter Fletcher's last two efforts, Wild Bill (2012) and Eddie the Eagle (2016) were both great.

"Damn straight my scarf is better than your scarf. Even in black'n'white, lady" - director Dexter Fletcher's last two efforts, Wild Bill (2012) and Eddie the Eagle (2016) were both great.

"I'm not posing for a photo until all memory of Dexter Fletcher's lustrous hair are long forgotten" - Gemma Whelan plays the mighy (and not forgotten) Yara Greyjoy in Game of Thrones.

"I'm not posing for a photo until all memory of Dexter Fletcher's lustrous hair are long forgotten" - Gemma Whelan plays the mighy (and not forgotten) Yara Greyjoy in Game of Thrones.

Julian Kostov was also at last week's premiere for the movie I prefer to call "Anuvva Muvva's Bruvva" because it's more memorable than the movie's actual title.

Julian Kostov was also at last week's premiere for the movie I prefer to call "Anuvva Muvva's Bruvva" because it's more memorable than the movie's actual title.

"...but if I go over to where you are, I'll be further away from the free drinks and canapes..." (edited to add : Aisling Bea)

"...but if I go over to where you are, I'll be further away from the free drinks and canapes..." (edited to add : Aisling Bea)

If I hadn't literally watched 'The VVitch (2015) yesterday, Anya Taylor-Joy would remain 'that lady I photographed at this year's Baftas and this year's Elle Style Awards'. But now I've watched The VVitch, and she was in that - and for her role in it, she won the Best Female Newcomer award on the night.

If I hadn't literally watched 'The VVitch (2015) yesterday, Anya Taylor-Joy would remain 'that lady I photographed at this year's Baftas and this year's Elle Style Awards'. But now I've watched The VVitch, and she was in that - and for her role in it, she won the Best Female Newcomer award on the night.

Ralph Inerson was also in The VVitch, though his scraggly beard (which was also amazing in the movie) sadly did not attend the ceremony.

Ralph Inerson was also in The VVitch, though his scraggly beard (which was also amazing in the movie) sadly did not attend the ceremony.

"This dress weighs 20 kilos, so I'm not dragging it over there just to have to drag it back..."

"This dress weighs 20 kilos, so I'm not dragging it over there just to have to drag it back..."

"It's almost as shiny, and 16 kilos lighter!" - Ella Purnell's filmography lists such interesting movies as Kick-Ass2, Maleficent and The Legend of Tarzan, none of which I can remember her being in, curiously. But then it's late as I'm typing this.

"It's almost as shiny, and 16 kilos lighter!" - Ella Purnell's filmography lists such interesting movies as Kick-Ass2, Maleficent and The Legend of Tarzan, none of which I can remember her being in, curiously. But then it's late as I'm typing this.

"Back in 2013, I made myself a vow that until DC make a decent superhero movie, I won't be smiling. I'm willing to go another decade if they are" - the face looks familiar but as at right now I don't know who this is.

"Back in 2013, I made myself a vow that until DC make a decent superhero movie, I won't be smiling. I'm willing to go another decade if they are" - the face looks familiar but as at right now I don't know who this is.

"I'm french and I don't need a reason to frown if I want to. But the DC Cinematic Universe is as good a reason as any" - it's director Luc Besson! (I'v never photographed him before) - he won the Empire Inspiration Award on the night.

"I'm french and I don't need a reason to frown if I want to. But the DC Cinematic Universe is as good a reason as any" - it's director Luc Besson! (I'v never photographed him before) - he won the Empire Inspiration Award on the night.

"That lady behind me has been spoiling portraits of me all month" - Luc Besson has directed such films as The Fifth Element, Nikita and Leon; as well as being the writer / creator of such things as the Taken, The Transporter and Lucy.

"That lady behind me has been spoiling portraits of me all month" - Luc Besson has directed such films as The Fifth Element, Nikita and Leon; as well as being the writer / creator of such things as the Taken, The Transporter and Lucy.

"But i'm not even all that famous..." true, but neither the best Actor Winner Eddie Redmayne (for Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them - he did not win for Theory Of Everything (for which he won an Oscar) nor was he nominated for The Danish Girl (for which he was nominated for an Oscar) in prior years) nor Best Actress Felicity Jones elected to attend or walk the red carpet, respectively.

"But i'm not even all that famous..." true, but neither the best Actor Winner Eddie Redmayne (for Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them - he did not win for Theory Of Everything (for which he won an Oscar) nor was he nominated for The Danish Girl (for which he was nominated for an Oscar) in prior years) nor Best Actress Felicity Jones elected to attend or walk the red carpet, respectively.

"Oh hi there. I'm not Tom Hiddleston. But he's on his way" - Louise Brealey is probably best known for being morgue attendant Molly Hooper in Sherlock.

"Oh hi there. I'm not Tom Hiddleston. But he's on his way" - Louise Brealey is probably best known for being morgue attendant Molly Hooper in Sherlock.

"So you want my autograph. Well, what if I want just a couple of moments of your time to talk about whether you're happy with your life and whether the Church of Asgard might be the path to your salvation" - it's Tom Hiddleston, and the autograph dealers in my pen haven't gotten this dangerously amped since Patrick Stewart, about half an hour ago.

"So you want my autograph. Well, what if I want just a couple of moments of your time to talk about whether you're happy with your life and whether the Church of Asgard might be the path to your salvation" - it's Tom Hiddleston, and the autograph dealers in my pen haven't gotten this dangerously amped since Patrick Stewart, about half an hour ago.

"And that's where my car is parked. Basically, you and I could just get into that and drive away, and leave all ths madness behind. Just you, me, my pink scarf and the French Riviera. PLEASE??" - Tom Hiddleston is best known for being Loki in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and has been at such premieres as "High-Rise" and "Thor The Dark World", as well as most recently "Kong : Skull Island"

"And that's where my car is parked. Basically, you and I could just get into that and drive away, and leave all ths madness behind. Just you, me, my pink scarf and the French Riviera. PLEASE??" - Tom Hiddleston is best known for being Loki in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and has been at such premieres as "High-Rise" and "Thor The Dark World", as well as most recently "Kong : Skull Island"

Guy in Background : "If I screw up these settings, my Wife, Daughter and Mum will never speak to me again..." - Tom Hiddleston ended up winning Awards for both The Night Manager and "Empire Hero" on the evening.

Guy in Background : "If I screw up these settings, my Wife, Daughter and Mum will never speak to me again..." - Tom Hiddleston ended up winning Awards for both The Night Manager and "Empire Hero" on the evening.

".... and I notic that not one of you brought a single thing from 'Only Lovers Left Alive', 'The Deep Blue Sea' or 'I walk the line' for me to sign, huh?"

".... and I notic that not one of you brought a single thing from 'Only Lovers Left Alive', 'The Deep Blue Sea' or 'I walk the line' for me to sign, huh?"

..... so that was that, and it was quite sizeable even if the awards' recipients might have caused a raised eyebrow in several categories... but until next months' Olivier Awards, there are currently no premieres or similar events scheduled in London. Which means dark times as the weather gets brighter.

Still, it's another entry for The Archive of Movie Premieres, and another entreaty for you to follow me on Facebook, or follow me on Twitter, if you want to know whenever I post one of these journals.

Until next time!