11 Oct - The (BFI LFF) 'The Birth of a Nation' premiere

October 11th, 2016.

After SEVEN DAYS of premieres (and another seven days to go), it's surprising I'm still managing to maintain the ability to mechanically press a button and give the impression of being a motivated photographer. The grammar and the meandering nature of some of the sentences I've been writing are a different matter, though. And today, it was another premiere (or in this case technically a 'headline gala'.

Here's how it went down:

We're going to need a bigger operating theatre. (this is literally the best thing I could come up with after looking at the words 'birth' 'of' 'a' and 'nation')

We're going to need a bigger operating theatre.
(this is literally the best thing I could come up with after looking at the words 'birth' 'of' 'a' and 'nation')

The Internet paints a rather inconsistent view of this film, with a 78% fresh rating (with an average rating of 7.2) on rottentomatoes contrasting with an average rating of 5.5 on imdb.com. My Magic 8-Ball gives it a rating of 'ask again later'

The Internet paints a rather inconsistent view of this film, with a 78% fresh rating (with an average rating of 7.2) on rottentomatoes contrasting with an average rating of 5.5 on imdb.com. My Magic 8-Ball gives it a rating of 'ask again later'

Cooler than you. Probably.

Cooler than you. Probably.

"The longer I stand here the less cool I look. And I am very interested in looking cool" - the implausibly yet awesomely named Ozwald Boateng and Guest.

"The longer I stand here the less cool I look. And I am very interested in looking cool" - the implausibly yet awesomely named Ozwald Boateng and Guest.

"Hold it. Hold it. There. I've now focussed on Canada"

"Hold it. Hold it. There. I've now focussed on Canada"

"Is that.... sheet metal??" - Gabrielle Union is arguably still best known for Bad Boys II (2003), and is also in this movie. Meanwhile, according to wikipedia, commonly used steel sheet metal ranges from 30 gauge to about 7 gauge.

"Is that.... sheet metal??" - Gabrielle Union is arguably still best known for Bad Boys II (2003), and is also in this movie. Meanwhile, according to wikipedia, commonly used steel sheet metal ranges from 30 gauge to about 7 gauge.

"Yes, the dress is great : but remember who's wearing it, yeah?"

"Yes, the dress is great : but remember who's wearing it, yeah?"

"Compliment my dress, or compliment me. It's your choice, but the dress is an inanimate object and can't really feel happy"

"Compliment my dress, or compliment me. It's your choice, but the dress is an inanimate object and can't really feel happy"

"My character's name is Will. No he doesn't have a surname. Or a mobile phone number. That's because the movie is set in the early 1800s. That's so long ago that people still had dialup internet back then, I believe" - Chike Okonkwo is in this movie, and was also in 'The Program', which was part of last year's BFI London Film Festival

"My character's name is Will. No he doesn't have a surname. Or a mobile phone number. That's because the movie is set in the early 1800s. That's so long ago that people still had dialup internet back then, I believe" - Chike Okonkwo is in this movie, and was also in 'The Program', which was part of last year's BFI London Film Festival

"And y'all really ARE fans of The Lone Ranger? Well I'm shocked and pleased in equal amounts..." - Armie Hammer played the titular Lone Ranger in the film of that name, and was also both of the Winkelvoss twins in 'The Social Network'

"And y'all really ARE fans of The Lone Ranger? Well I'm shocked and pleased in equal amounts..." - Armie Hammer played the titular Lone Ranger in the film of that name, and was also both of the Winkelvoss twins in 'The Social Network'

"Watch out for the one photographer. He wears a backwards baseball cap - they're NEVER that cool" - Armie Hammer's +1 at this event was his wife actress Elizabeth Chambers.

"Watch out for the one photographer. He wears a backwards baseball cap - they're NEVER that cool" - Armie Hammer's +1 at this event was his wife actress Elizabeth Chambers.

"There is NO WAY they're planning a franchise of films based on Birth of a Nation. Teething troubles of a nation, potty training of a nation, puberty of a nation and so on? Ridiculous. I won't do it.". At the end of the day, every studio wants a franchise and a cinematic universe more than they want a meaningful story of human dignity...

"There is NO WAY they're planning a franchise of films based on Birth of a Nation. Teething troubles of a nation, potty training of a nation, puberty of a nation and so on? Ridiculous. I won't do it.". At the end of the day, every studio wants a franchise and a cinematic universe more than they want a meaningful story of human dignity...

"Air High-Five! I loved you in Mirror, Mirror dude!" - that movie remains pretty much the only film by director 'Tarsem' that didn't make me want to throw numerous heavy things at lonely fragile things. I thought it was (surprisingly) delightful.

"Air High-Five! I loved you in Mirror, Mirror dude!" - that movie remains pretty much the only film by director 'Tarsem' that didn't make me want to throw numerous heavy things at lonely fragile things. I thought it was (surprisingly) delightful.

"This game can keep young kids amused for hours. Or some autograph dealers for weeks. Which one are you?"

"This game can keep young kids amused for hours. Or some autograph dealers for weeks. Which one are you?"

"You want me to sign as writer, director AND star of the film? Three distinct autographs, you mean? Okay..." - Nate Parker did/does indeed write, direct and star in this movie.

"You want me to sign as writer, director AND star of the film? Three distinct autographs, you mean? Okay..." - Nate Parker did/does indeed write, direct and star in this movie.

"No, I'm not signing it as Producer as well. I'm all out of signature variants..."

"No, I'm not signing it as Producer as well. I'm all out of signature variants..."

"As long as nobdy mentions 'Red Tails' all will be well." I certainly won't be. Not until I'm safely home and have access to the internet movie database.

"As long as nobdy mentions 'Red Tails' all will be well." I certainly won't be. Not until I'm safely home and have access to the internet movie database.

"Armie's already inside and probably demolishing the popcorn stand as we speak, so I'm going to go inside now"

"Armie's already inside and probably demolishing the popcorn stand as we speak, so I'm going to go inside now"

"Y'all can fit the sign into frame from where you're standing, right?"

"Y'all can fit the sign into frame from where you're standing, right?"

"Force push!!! Yeah, I can do that. Disney's lawyers can't sue EVERYBODY, right?" I'm given to understand that they absolutely can.

"Force push!!! Yeah, I can do that. Disney's lawyers can't sue EVERYBODY, right?" I'm given to understand that they absolutely can.

So... that was that, and it's another premiere for The Archive of Movie Premieres, to which some ten have been added in the past week, including but not limited to ones my sleep-deprived mind can currently vaguely remember, like...uh "Arrival" yesterday with Amy Adams and Jeremy Renner and "A Monster Calls" last week with Sigourney Weaver. And... uh... "Elle" with Paul Verhoeven and "Bleed like this" with Miles Teller and Aaron Eckhart and "American Honey". And there were others. Several and/or many others.

Until... tomorrow! (and the day after that! and that! and that! and the closing night!). Or so I intend.

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