14 Oct - The BFI LFF 'The Front Runner' Premiere / Alfonso Cuaron Talk.

October 14th, 2018.

A friend of mine described today as a “broken day” and that’s a pretty accurate assessment. The plan had been to start with an 11am 90-minute screentalk by Director Alfonso Cuaron, then head to Embankment for the premiere of ‘The Little Drummer Girl’ and the end the day with the premiere of ‘The Frontrunner’ with Hugh Jackman.

By 10am those plans were in tatters. Cuaron had been delayed at an airport in Italy, the screentalk was deferred to 4:30pm meaning I’d miss The Little Drummer Girl, and then Hugh Jackman couldn’t attend ‘The Frontrunner’. And it rained.

Here’s how it - or something - went down:

“Well… it’s rain and it’s London. Can we say we organised it deliberately in a way to NOT subvert expectations?”

“Well… it’s rain and it’s London. Can we say we organised it deliberately in a way to NOT subvert expectations?”

A long pen, and a lit board. And a dull poster I’ll be mentioning again later.

A long pen, and a lit board. And a dull poster I’ll be mentioning again later.

When in doubt (or blinded by a nearby spotlight), make art. Or point camera.

When in doubt (or blinded by a nearby spotlight), make art. Or point camera.

I believe this is the BFI’s Artistic Director Tricia Tuttle. Also : I might have gone slightly overboard on the backlight colour here, but I stand by the call.

I believe this is the BFI’s Artistic Director Tricia Tuttle. Also : I might have gone slightly overboard on the backlight colour here, but I stand by the call.

I don’t know who this is/was, and the Paparazzi weren’t interested in photographing her either. But with this premiere’s confirmed absence of Hugh Jackman, I’m more or less looking for anyone interesting, or glamorous, or… you know… physically PRESENT to photograph.

I don’t know who this is/was, and the Paparazzi weren’t interested in photographing her either. But with this premiere’s confirmed absence of Hugh Jackman, I’m more or less looking for anyone interesting, or glamorous, or… you know… physically PRESENT to photograph.

Per the prior comment, it appears I can add to my staggeringly impressive ability with pickup lines with   “Excuse Me, Ma’am, You Appear To Be Physically Present Here…..”  . Give me some feedback if this works.. For reference, you should assume I look slightly like Jason Statham.

Per the prior comment, it appears I can add to my staggeringly impressive ability with pickup lines with “Excuse Me, Ma’am, You Appear To Be Physically Present Here…..”. Give me some feedback if this works.. For reference, you should assume I look slightly like Jason Statham.

I don’t know who this is, but the Paparazzi did photograph him, and also he’s in front of what’s fast becoming my favorite Leicester Square backdrop: the Crest of London  “50% SALE”  signage.

I don’t know who this is, but the Paparazzi did photograph him, and also he’s in front of what’s fast becoming my favorite Leicester Square backdrop: the Crest of London “50% SALE” signage.

I’m not sure if the guy in orange is from the production company, but either way his expression mirrors mine in regard to that poster for “The Front Runner” -   “Why did we only give the Work Experience kid 15mins and Powerpoint to create this movie poster??”

I’m not sure if the guy in orange is from the production company, but either way his expression mirrors mine in regard to that poster for “The Front Runner” - “Why did we only give the Work Experience kid 15mins and Powerpoint to create this movie poster??”

Get excited, because this movie’s SOLE attendee is coming!! (sadly, Hugh Jackman, who was scheduled to attend, was unable to)

Get excited, because this movie’s SOLE attendee is coming!! (sadly, Hugh Jackman, who was scheduled to attend, was unable to)

“Yeah… that’s exactly how my stylist wanted my hair to look”  - it’s Jason Reitman! I last photographed him at a prior London Film Festival where it ALSO rained :    “Men, Women and Children”

“Yeah… that’s exactly how my stylist wanted my hair to look” - it’s Jason Reitman! I last photographed him at a prior London Film Festival where it ALSO rained : “Men, Women and Children”

“Woah - that gust of wind made it even BETTER : please tweet my stylist with that photo immediately!”

“Woah - that gust of wind made it even BETTER : please tweet my stylist with that photo immediately!”

Jason Reitman explains to a fan that Hugh Jackman was filming til 2am and dragged himself to the airport only to have his plane simply sit on the tarmac without taking off. Well… it certainly sucks that that happened, and that apparently my f**king train company also now runs an airline.

Jason Reitman explains to a fan that Hugh Jackman was filming til 2am and dragged himself to the airport only to have his plane simply sit on the tarmac without taking off. Well… it certainly sucks that that happened, and that apparently my f**king train company also now runs an airline.

“Anyway, let’s be frank since he’s not here - Hugh Jackman’s hair has always been far too neat and orderly” . Fortunately I’ve photographed Hugh Jackman on several occasions - premieres like    Australia   ,    Real Steel   ,    Les Miserables    and    The Wolverine   .

“Anyway, let’s be frank since he’s not here - Hugh Jackman’s hair has always been far too neat and orderly”. Fortunately I’ve photographed Hugh Jackman on several occasions - premieres like Australia, Real Steel, Les Miserables and The Wolverine.

“And what if I just stand here. Who’s going to stop me?”  - Jason Reitman, incidentally, has FOUR Oscar nominations to his name -three for ‘Up In The Air’ and one for ‘Juno"‘

“And what if I just stand here. Who’s going to stop me?” - Jason Reitman, incidentally, has FOUR Oscar nominations to his name -three for ‘Up In The Air’ and one for ‘Juno"‘

Quite the photographic lineup : pro camera with flash, mobile held horizontally, mobile held vertically, and DSLR with onboard flash. I myself used no less than FOUR cameras in this journal : Pentax DSLR, Nikon DSLR, GoPro and Huawei Mobile phone.

Quite the photographic lineup : pro camera with flash, mobile held horizontally, mobile held vertically, and DSLR with onboard flash. I myself used no less than FOUR cameras in this journal : Pentax DSLR, Nikon DSLR, GoPro and Huawei Mobile phone.

Disappointment at missing one full premiere, and having only half of two attendees at this one, and only half of an Alfonso Cuaron screentalk (refer below), along with rain, a broken backpack and a delayed train trip home…. sometimes a photo can kind of make it worth it. I like this one.  The end.

Disappointment at missing one full premiere, and having only half of two attendees at this one, and only half of an Alfonso Cuaron screentalk (refer below), along with rain, a broken backpack and a delayed train trip home…. sometimes a photo can kind of make it worth it. I like this one.

The end.

Bonus: I’m adding the Director’s Screentalk by Alfonso Cuaron (who I already photographed yesterday at the premiere of “Roma”) to this journal:

These are the stairs of the Picturehouse Central. As    lamented yesterday   , they’re probably the ONE thing the PHC has that’s actually kind of cool, and I have no idea at all why they don’t get stars to pose, half-way up, facing down, with the chandeliers shining above them.

These are the stairs of the Picturehouse Central. As lamented yesterday, they’re probably the ONE thing the PHC has that’s actually kind of cool, and I have no idea at all why they don’t get stars to pose, half-way up, facing down, with the chandeliers shining above them.

“So you were in town yesterday for the premiere of Roma, and yet your delay for this screentalk today was caused because you were in ITALY overnight? Explain how….” ”Or I could talk about my movies in the shortened time we have….?” ”Sure, okay. Let’s do that”

“So you were in town yesterday for the premiere of Roma, and yet your delay for this screentalk today was caused because you were in ITALY overnight? Explain how….”
”Or I could talk about my movies in the shortened time we have….?”
”Sure, okay. Let’s do that”

“First of all, never fly Ryan Air”  - Agreed. I’ve flown them once, and never again. F&&kers.

“First of all, never fly Ryan Air” - Agreed. I’ve flown them once, and never again. F&&kers.

Two of Alfonso’s key points : how important collaboration is, and also he used to have an affinity with the colour green. Interestingly, I’m an extremely poor collaborator, and the one time I loved the colour green I used to correct all my photos for years to give them a green tint… until one day I found out that my monitor was miscalibrated and I was turning them all subtly and increasingly brown.  As you can see… I’m getting a lot out of this screentalk.

Two of Alfonso’s key points : how important collaboration is, and also he used to have an affinity with the colour green. Interestingly, I’m an extremely poor collaborator, and the one time I loved the colour green I used to correct all my photos for years to give them a green tint… until one day I found out that my monitor was miscalibrated and I was turning them all subtly and increasingly brown.

As you can see… I’m getting a lot out of this screentalk.

“Thanks for that. Mind if I take the unopened bottles of water with me? I still haven’t finished my coffee”

“Thanks for that. Mind if I take the unopened bottles of water with me? I still haven’t finished my coffee”

So… that was that. Two no-shows and one sick triceratops, so to speak. Or one cold and rainy premiere, and a half-length screentalk. I’d kind of hope for better tomorrow, but so far 4/5ths of my days at BFI LFF have been deleteriously affected by something. Can’t wait to see what it is tomorrow, then…..

Until next time!

“So… wait….. is Hugh Jackman here or isn’t he?” ”Well, in the sense that you might rightly question whether any of us are really ever “here”….” ”Damnit, Janine….”

“So… wait….. is Hugh Jackman here or isn’t he?”
”Well, in the sense that you might rightly question whether any of us are really ever “here”….”
”Damnit, Janine….”

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