23 Aug - The 'To Your Last Death' Frightfest Premiere

August 23rd, 2019.

I only managed to make it to one premiere on Day 2 of Frightfest (my self-appointed “Dario Argento-ing” duties took precedence), and I’ll be honest due to lack of signage I wasn’t entirely sure what movie it was for until some time later, for which I can only apologise!

Incidentally, on a bit of a “proof-of-concept” note, all the photos in the ‘main’ part of this journal were MOBILE PHONE ONLY - the first time I’ve done that. Note though that I still edited them considerably, which I also would have done if they were taken on any other camera.

Anyway, here’ how it went down:

The Huawei P20 pro is quieter, and certainly more discreet than the DSLR I prefer to use at events. But the autofocus in weird lighting is a bit iffy, and the amount of shadow detail you can recover is somewhat poor. But it’s not all bad… this multi-light source scene didn’t confuse it too much.  (Also : it’s almost time to recheck the Soundtracks table : they have a constantly refreshing ‘grid’ that’s about 5x5 soundtracks, and every time somebody buys one they replace it with another one. Sometimes, if I’m honest, I want to buy one just so I can see what they replace it with)

The Huawei P20 pro is quieter, and certainly more discreet than the DSLR I prefer to use at events. But the autofocus in weird lighting is a bit iffy, and the amount of shadow detail you can recover is somewhat poor. But it’s not all bad… this multi-light source scene didn’t confuse it too much.

(Also : it’s almost time to recheck the Soundtracks table : they have a constantly refreshing ‘grid’ that’s about 5x5 soundtracks, and every time somebody buys one they replace it with another one. Sometimes, if I’m honest, I want to buy one just so I can see what they replace it with)

“Hello? I’ve lost my 4yr old and I’m worried he might have wandered into a movie that’ll scar him for life….”   Actually I think The Lion King remake is playing at the Odeon and Vue, not here during Frightfest.

“Hello? I’ve lost my 4yr old and I’m worried he might have wandered into a movie that’ll scar him for life….”
Actually I think The Lion King remake is playing at the Odeon and Vue, not here during Frightfest.

My theory is that since most people attending Frightfest wear day- or weekend-pass lanyards, anyone not wearing one is probably famous. Or…. like me, in possession of a ticket to an individual screening. So… either Very Important or utterly irrelevant. But… that leopard-print vest is pretty cool.

My theory is that since most people attending Frightfest wear day- or weekend-pass lanyards, anyone not wearing one is probably famous. Or…. like me, in possession of a ticket to an individual screening. So… either Very Important or utterly irrelevant. But… that leopard-print vest is pretty cool.

“The heavy backlighting? It’s there to confuse iphoneographers who don’t know their equipment well enough to do anything but take silhouette shots of the stars”.  Well… I’m using a Huawei, and it’s not exactly overjoyed either…. but there are some overrides I can use.

“The heavy backlighting? It’s there to confuse iphoneographers who don’t know their equipment well enough to do anything but take silhouette shots of the stars”.
Well… I’m using a Huawei, and it’s not exactly overjoyed either…. but there are some overrides I can use.

Our heroes pose in front of the white back-lit screen of doom…. (confession : when I took this photograph, and, yes, probably for another 6hours later, I didn’t know for certain what movie was being premiered…)

Our heroes pose in front of the white back-lit screen of doom…. (confession : when I took this photograph, and, yes, probably for another 6hours later, I didn’t know for certain what movie was being premiered…)

“Seriously - a clue! Just give us a clue so we can hashtag it!”  As at now, some 24 hours later, I know the name of this movie and the probable identity of 60% of the people in this photo!

“Seriously - a clue! Just give us a clue so we can hashtag it!”
As at now, some 24 hours later, I know the name of this movie and the probable identity of 60% of the people in this photo!

“If two of you could just pretend to be Morena Baccarin and William Shatner it’ll just mean a lot more facebook likes all round, and I think we all want that!”  I’m still working on my plan to insert Tom Hiddleston and Timothee Chalamet into every premiere journal.

“If two of you could just pretend to be Morena Baccarin and William Shatner it’ll just mean a lot more facebook likes all round, and I think we all want that!”
I’m still working on my plan to insert Tom Hiddleston and Timothee Chalamet into every premiere journal.

“The cartoonisation process doesn’t work that well… but it is mostly painless…”  I’m using a “posterise” filter in a copy of Photoshop so old it was made for Windows XP and yet has worked on Windows7 AND Windows10… the point being that this is an animated movie.

“The cartoonisation process doesn’t work that well… but it is mostly painless…”
I’m using a “posterise” filter in a copy of Photoshop so old it was made for Windows XP and yet has worked on Windows7 AND Windows10… the point being that this is an animated movie.

“I’m sure the portrait shot of me will look great, but your proximity means you’re totally missing the giant Alfred Hitchcock silhouette over there….”  Jason Axinn is the director of this film.

“I’m sure the portrait shot of me will look great, but your proximity means you’re totally missing the giant Alfred Hitchcock silhouette over there….”
Jason Axinn is the director of this film.

“The more aggressive you pose, the further back I’m going to move… is the exit still downstairs to my left?”  My overall feedback on the Huawei is that as long as there is some strong light source  somewhere , the camera kind of ‘brackets’ the image. The worst results come when the overall lighting is too dull.

“The more aggressive you pose, the further back I’m going to move… is the exit still downstairs to my left?”
My overall feedback on the Huawei is that as long as there is some strong light source somewhere, the camera kind of ‘brackets’ the image. The worst results come when the overall lighting is too dull.

“I’m here with my good friends Morena Baccarin and William Shatner… and what the hell you can just call me either one of the Russo Brothers while we’re at it”  I’m fairly certain that the two people flanking director Jason Axinn are writers Jim Cirile and Tanya C. Klein.

“I’m here with my good friends Morena Baccarin and William Shatner… and what the hell you can just call me either one of the Russo Brothers while we’re at it”
I’m fairly certain that the two people flanking director Jason Axinn are writers Jim Cirile and Tanya C. Klein.

“I think he wants to ask you some questions…” ”What kind? I didn’t study” ”I think they’re mostly going to be about your movie, Jason….” ”Yeah, but like I said…..”

“I think he wants to ask you some questions…”
”What kind? I didn’t study”
”I think they’re mostly going to be about your movie, Jason….”
”Yeah, but like I said…..”

“What was it like making this movie? Well I don’t want to spoil the rumours that we had thousands of animators working over a giant network so we could literally film it being drawn live…. so….”  From a photography standpoint, this image kind of shows that the Huawei is pretty great at retaining detail in both darkness and light and very mixed lighting….

“What was it like making this movie? Well I don’t want to spoil the rumours that we had thousands of animators working over a giant network so we could literally film it being drawn live…. so….”
From a photography standpoint, this image kind of shows that the Huawei is pretty great at retaining detail in both darkness and light and very mixed lighting….

“Oh, absolutely we looked at it the same way Disney does : make it an animated feature first, then see if we can get Will Smith or Emma Watson for the live-action remake a few years from now….”  Jason Axinn’s Video Short credits include at least two pretty great sounding entries “Rosetta Stone : Sexy Accent” and “Mattress Mike’s Mattresses”. Oh, and of course “Funeral Sex”

“Oh, absolutely we looked at it the same way Disney does : make it an animated feature first, then see if we can get Will Smith or Emma Watson for the live-action remake a few years from now….”
Jason Axinn’s Video Short credits include at least two pretty great sounding entries “Rosetta Stone : Sexy Accent” and “Mattress Mike’s Mattresses”. Oh, and of course “Funeral Sex”

“I don’t look ANYTHING like Chris Pratt, though I’ll grant you he does look a bit like ME“

“I don’t look ANYTHING like Chris Pratt, though I’ll grant you he does look a bit like ME“

“Is it contagious? Well that depends on how you’re intending to pay for your Nachos order…”

“Is it contagious? Well that depends on how you’re intending to pay for your Nachos order…”

“… on second thoughts, I might head to Shake Shack and try to smuggle my meal into the cinema…..”

“… on second thoughts, I might head to Shake Shack and try to smuggle my meal into the cinema…..”

“I’m glad you looked up my imdb entry just so you could ask me about my voice credit in this movie… for what it’s worth, the role of “Additional Voices (voice)” is absolutely crucial, and probably the most important in the film. Also, please don’t ever tell Will Shatner I said that, if you ever meet him”  Excitingly, the movie’s two writers ALSO have voice credits in the film.

“I’m glad you looked up my imdb entry just so you could ask me about my voice credit in this movie… for what it’s worth, the role of “Additional Voices (voice)” is absolutely crucial, and probably the most important in the film. Also, please don’t ever tell Will Shatner I said that, if you ever meet him”
Excitingly, the movie’s two writers ALSO have voice credits in the film.

So… that was that. I look forward to catching the movie when it hits iTunes (or, I suppose, if it makes it to DVD which even today is still my preferred format) . As for photography, though not bad I think I prefer to reliability and flexibility of a DSLR over a Mobile phone, though I think overall the Huawei even at 2 generations “old”, did very well.

Incidentally

“I was in what? As who? Well… probably, if you say so…”  (captured on a Pentax DSLR) - not at the premiere, but in this movie, and photographed a few weeks ago at London Film & Comic Con : William Shatner!

“I was in what? As who? Well… probably, if you say so…”
(captured on a Pentax DSLR) - not at the premiere, but in this movie, and photographed a few weeks ago at London Film & Comic Con : William Shatner!

Photographed a short time later (and with the Pentax), at another Frightfest premiere… UNKNOWN DIRECTOR (I’d missed the premiere of “Bliss”, sadly…)

Photographed a short time later (and with the Pentax), at another Frightfest premiere… UNKNOWN DIRECTOR (I’d missed the premiere of “Bliss”, sadly…)

So… for better or for worse, that was a premiere captured on a mobile phone. I’ll be taking the next day off, but returning with my ticket to “Dark Light” tomorrow… and seeing how those Soundtracks are going… and whether I might be able to add that or another movie to my Archive of Premieres.

Until Next Time!

Follow me on facebook at premieresdotco, or twitter at berndt2_photo.

23 Aug - The Dario Argento 'Fear' Book Signing and Frightfest Screentalk

August 23rd, 2019.

After yesterday’s fairly satisfying Frightfest efforts (the premieres for “Come to Daddy” and “Crawl”) today didn’t quite go the way I planned, both Frightfest-wise and Generally. But I did manage to accomplish this (beyond than just adding 3 more soundtracks to my collection of (now) 8 bought at this Frightfest) - I had a ticket to a screentalk by Italian giallo and horror master Dario Argento, and he was also presenting one of his films from the early 1980s (“Tenebrae”) AND signing copies of his autobiography “Fear”.

Here’s how it went down:

Dario And Cool Gang Posse - the director is in a blue shirt’n’shadez (interesting ‘fact’ - at Frightfest, anyone WITHOUT a lanyard is almost certainly important… or, like me, a single ticket holder rather than daypass/weekend-pass holder)

Dario And Cool Gang Posse - the director is in a blue shirt’n’shadez (interesting ‘fact’ - at Frightfest, anyone WITHOUT a lanyard is almost certainly important… or, like me, a single ticket holder rather than daypass/weekend-pass holder)

Captured mainly because of her cool skull-design dress, it turns out the lady isBelinda Mattiello - the author who translated Dario Argento’s autobiography from Italian to English - and she was here purely as a FAN (she wanted to get her copy of the book signed by him!). To standee board of The Room With Tommy Wiseau is unrelated, but perhaps also appropriate, for Frightfest (I went to that    last year and it was quite the experience   ).

Captured mainly because of her cool skull-design dress, it turns out the lady isBelinda Mattiello - the author who translated Dario Argento’s autobiography from Italian to English - and she was here purely as a FAN (she wanted to get her copy of the book signed by him!). To standee board of The Room With Tommy Wiseau is unrelated, but perhaps also appropriate, for Frightfest (I went to that last year and it was quite the experience).

“Wassup?”  (or nearest Italian equivalent). (brand of wristwatch : unknown).

“Wassup?” (or nearest Italian equivalent).
(brand of wristwatch : unknown).

Some hours later, I’ve had a late lunch and joined the queue for the screentalk. Amazingly, the tickets were free - you just had to be lucky enough to be logged on during their release, which I was. (I’m suspicious when I get lucky, though… it typically means another part of my life will get unlucky to “compensate”)

Some hours later, I’ve had a late lunch and joined the queue for the screentalk. Amazingly, the tickets were free - you just had to be lucky enough to be logged on during their release, which I was. (I’m suspicious when I get lucky, though… it typically means another part of my life will get unlucky to “compensate”)

It’s Dario Argento Without Dark Sunglasses! One cool revelation about him : he has no copies of his films at his house. He believes in watching others’ movies - even rewatching them many many times - but he prefers to Move On from the movies he’s made. It’s quite a cool philosophy.

It’s Dario Argento Without Dark Sunglasses!
One cool revelation about him : he has no copies of his films at his house. He believes in watching others’ movies - even rewatching them many many times - but he prefers to Move On from the movies he’s made. It’s quite a cool philosophy.

“Anyway… we’ll be selling his biography in the other cinema and he’ll be signing autographs there… you might want to have started queueing for that a few hours ago, though…”  It’s also a rare chance to trial my mobile phone’s “Night” photo function - a 4 second ‘rolling’ HDR computational multi-step iterative photograph…. you know… stuff that distracts you from what’s going on around you.

“Anyway… we’ll be selling his biography in the other cinema and he’ll be signing autographs there… you might want to have started queueing for that a few hours ago, though…”
It’s also a rare chance to trial my mobile phone’s “Night” photo function - a 4 second ‘rolling’ HDR computational multi-step iterative photograph…. you know… stuff that distracts you from what’s going on around you.

“1 in 50 autobiographies will be randomly sold in the original Italian… it’s my preferred version, and if it prompts you to take up a new language to read it then that’ll make you an even better person….”  Another neat thing : he said in almost all instances, he preferred writing about embarrassing things and being honest about them rather than sugar-coating them for his autobiography.

“1 in 50 autobiographies will be randomly sold in the original Italian… it’s my preferred version, and if it prompts you to take up a new language to read it then that’ll make you an even better person….”
Another neat thing : he said in almost all instances, he preferred writing about embarrassing things and being honest about them rather than sugar-coating them for his autobiography.

As is often the case, I chose photography over autograph-y and grabbed a few shot of Mr Argento, slightly better lit, before zipping off to withdraw some cash for the book (the only currency of the realm to be accepted at the signing being… currency. of the realm.)

As is often the case, I chose photography over autograph-y and grabbed a few shot of Mr Argento, slightly better lit, before zipping off to withdraw some cash for the book (the only currency of the realm to be accepted at the signing being… currency. of the realm.)

“Yes…. this is ABSOLUTELY my best side. You’re welcome”

“Yes…. this is ABSOLUTELY my best side. You’re welcome”

OMG DO YOU REALISE WHO YOU’RE PHOTOGRAPHING???   Well… it’s a bit of a meta-shot in this case, but more or less, yes.

OMG DO YOU REALISE WHO YOU’RE PHOTOGRAPHING???
Well… it’s a bit of a meta-shot in this case, but more or less, yes.

I return from the nearest ATM/Cashpoint and… erm… that’s not just a random snake-like crowd… that’s a QUEUE for the book signing, stretching from inside the building to almost the intersection to the street the Prince Charles Cinema is on!!

I return from the nearest ATM/Cashpoint and… erm… that’s not just a random snake-like crowd… that’s a QUEUE for the book signing, stretching from inside the building to almost the intersection to the street the Prince Charles Cinema is on!!

Realising that the queue is unlikely to be cleared in the next HOUR (at which point they might well run out of books, or Argento of any desire to sign anything ever again), I decide to head off for dinner.

Realising that the queue is unlikely to be cleared in the next HOUR (at which point they might well run out of books, or Argento of any desire to sign anything ever again), I decide to head off for dinner.

Amazingly, an hour later I join the end of the queue (there is still a queue!), and there is excellent evidence to suggest the number of books remaining is (slightly) greater than the number of people in the queue. And the Maestro looks in good spirits!

Amazingly, an hour later I join the end of the queue (there is still a queue!), and there is excellent evidence to suggest the number of books remaining is (slightly) greater than the number of people in the queue. And the Maestro looks in good spirits!

Amazingly - they even gave you the option of getting the book personalised! That means Argento was writing probably two times as many letters as just those in his own name…. I’m not entirely sure he was confident with the spelling of my rather weirdly-foreign name (I’m pretty sure I spelled it correctly on my post-it note, though….)

Amazingly - they even gave you the option of getting the book personalised! That means Argento was writing probably two times as many letters as just those in his own name…. I’m not entirely sure he was confident with the spelling of my rather weirdly-foreign name (I’m pretty sure I spelled it correctly on my post-it note, though….)

I kinda love this random shot picked up by the GoPro I’d left sitting on the table taking automatic 2-shots-per-second on Auto. (It took all the shots of the signing - it was dark, but the ‘vibe’ was that the larger DSLR probably wouldn’t have been tolerated)

I kinda love this random shot picked up by the GoPro I’d left sitting on the table taking automatic 2-shots-per-second on Auto. (It took all the shots of the signing - it was dark, but the ‘vibe’ was that the larger DSLR probably wouldn’t have been tolerated)

Another fairly good inadvertent shot : the GoPro lying on the far edge of the newly-signed book, as I head off to find the very cheerful and friendly translator Belinda Mattiello to sign it too (and she did!)

Another fairly good inadvertent shot : the GoPro lying on the far edge of the newly-signed book, as I head off to find the very cheerful and friendly translator Belinda Mattiello to sign it too (and she did!)

Woohoo!!

Woohoo!!

So… that was that. Not a premiere as such… but an event in two / three parts as part of my Frightfest 2019 experience.

And needless to say the shitstain on civilisation that is the unholy marriage of my train company Govia Thameslink and Network Rail once again proved that this f**king country is a joke with a 4 hour delay to peak train services due to fallen power lines.

I mean.. I don’t know what to tell you. It gets cold in winter, it gets warm in summer, and sometimes it’s windy and sometimes it rains. Network Rail has GBP6.5BILLION in annual revenue (of which less than half goes on operating costs) and GBP51BILLION in net debt. But hey, it’s only a first world country’s infrastructure…. only millions of people use it…

22 Aug 2019 - The 'Come to Daddy' Frightfest Premiere

August 22nd 2019.

It’s Frightfest time again! And ever since I discovered the deep secrets at the heart of how the event (kind of) functions, I’ve decided I actually kind of like it. Sure, sure, it’s an indoor event whose reflective corridors run hot with accumulated bodies and an airconditioning system that never quite figures out how to win.

But there’s movies and there’s stars and there’s that one table that sells pretty awesome discounted soundtracks…. so whereas last year I treated myself to one movie ticker (“The Man Who Killed Hitler And Then The Bigfoot”)… this year it’s three. Maybe four. And with the kind of access that money CAN buy, I’ll see how I go with photographing the odd premiere, too.

Here’s how the first one went down:

The Prince Charles Cinema is one of two cinemas hosting Frightfest - I’ll be seeing ‘The Dark Light’ there on Sunday, but for today (and most of the premieres) it’s…..

The Prince Charles Cinema is one of two cinemas hosting Frightfest - I’ll be seeing ‘The Dark Light’ there on Sunday, but for today (and most of the premieres) it’s…..

The entrance to the Cineworld (nee Empire) cinema welcomes you, and hopes you and your hacker friends don’t change the lettering on the stairs to something problematic.. like “We Love Unicorns” and “All Our Films Are G-Rated : Bring Your Toddler!!”

The entrance to the Cineworld (nee Empire) cinema welcomes you, and hopes you and your hacker friends don’t change the lettering on the stairs to something problematic.. like “We Love Unicorns” and “All Our Films Are G-Rated : Bring Your Toddler!!”

A barrier so definitive that my programming can not think of a single way to get past or around it.

A barrier so definitive that my programming can not think of a single way to get past or around it.

Three stars for ‘Come To Daddy’ - the man on the far right quickly disappeared and was seemingly not interviewed. I know he’s not Elijah Wood (who is in this movie) but by process of elimination (he’s also not me, he’s not one of several of my friends) that doesn’t narrow it down below 8billion other people he might be.

Three stars for ‘Come To Daddy’ - the man on the far right quickly disappeared and was seemingly not interviewed. I know he’s not Elijah Wood (who is in this movie) but by process of elimination (he’s also not me, he’s not one of several of my friends) that doesn’t narrow it down below 8billion other people he might be.

“And then I was like “hey, bud.. you can’t treat me like that : I’ve worked with TARANTINO”… and you told me… what did you tell me again?” ”I told you that was Tim Roth” ”Yeah… but it fools most people”  Michael Smiley (actor, left) and Ant Timpson (director, right)

“And then I was like “hey, bud.. you can’t treat me like that : I’ve worked with TARANTINO”… and you told me… what did you tell me again?”
”I told you that was Tim Roth”
”Yeah… but it fools most people”

Michael Smiley (actor, left) and Ant Timpson (director, right)

“You know… that reflective ceiling is pretty cool… they should totally use that…”

“You know… that reflective ceiling is pretty cool… they should totally use that…”

“Anyway, I’m going to be over there answering questions. Remember to tell anyone who asks how great I was to work with.” ”But….” ”You’re an ACTOR…. ACT if you have to!” ”Oh, right”

“Anyway, I’m going to be over there answering questions. Remember to tell anyone who asks how great I was to work with.”
”But….”
”You’re an ACTOR…. ACT if you have to!”
”Oh, right”

Director Ant Timpson might be onto something…

Director Ant Timpson might be onto something…

“It’s not for sale. I’m just committed to making you all feel really bad that you don’t own one like it”

“It’s not for sale. I’m just committed to making you all feel really bad that you don’t own one like it”

Once again all evidence points to my Pentax being better at pickup lines and chatting up The Ladiez than I am… and it just makes a clicking noise once every 5seconds until the buffer is full.

Once again all evidence points to my Pentax being better at pickup lines and chatting up The Ladiez than I am… and it just makes a clicking noise once every 5seconds until the buffer is full.

Scariest thing I’ve seen at Frightfest so far… that Hawaiian shirt.

Scariest thing I’ve seen at Frightfest so far… that Hawaiian shirt.

“Before I answer any questions I want to know what that thing you’re holding is. Yes, it’s furry, but this is Frightfest and I want to KNOW”

“Before I answer any questions I want to know what that thing you’re holding is. Yes, it’s furry, but this is Frightfest and I want to KNOW”

More scary things ; Girl From The Ring, Man Without Skin, and most terrifying of all Man Who Will Walk Slowly And Obliviously And Never Stop Texting Or Interact With The World Around Him.

More scary things ; Girl From The Ring, Man Without Skin, and most terrifying of all Man Who Will Walk Slowly And Obliviously And Never Stop Texting Or Interact With The World Around Him.

“I just saw it move, and no it wasn’t the wind”  Michael Smiley is best known for being the Ben Wheatley films    “Free Fire”    and “Kill List” but prior to now I’ve only photographed him looking dapper at the premiere of    “Jawbone”   .

“I just saw it move, and no it wasn’t the wind”
Michael Smiley is best known for being the Ben Wheatley films “Free Fire” and “Kill List” but prior to now I’ve only photographed him looking dapper at the premiere of “Jawbone”.

“Is that a beer I’m holding while being interviewed? Don’t be ridiculous. This is Frightfest - this is a whiskey. Neat. Next question?”

“Is that a beer I’m holding while being interviewed? Don’t be ridiculous. This is Frightfest - this is a whiskey. Neat. Next question?”

So… that was that. And I’d already bought five soundtracks from That Table… time to head back to the office, pack up, grab some dinner (or not)… and be back to do it all again (and THIS time see the movie) just a few hours later….

Until… then!

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