8th Oct 2019 - The BFI LFF 'Knives Out' European Premiere

October 8th, 2019.

First off, I just want to say a heartfelt thank you to the guys at Pace Prestige, who do security at these events. In spite of things I might have said, thought, and communicated about the process by which they distribute wristbands and load pens, they were actually genuinely helpful people today. People are more than organisations.

Secondly, while I’m already doing impossible things like apologising in journals that next to nobody reads, this was an interesting premiere for me. They say Never Meet Your Heroes - and for good reason, as they can only really meet but in all likelihood fall short of your high expectations. But what about meeting your ENEMY? Is that ever a good idea? Weirdly, and kind of inevitably, the answer is : YES, you SHOULD meet your enemy (even if they don’t know they are)

Here’s how it went down (note : the anti-Star Wars comments are just a bit of fun):

“They asked me twice to reassure them that I had no strongly negative feelings about The Last Jedi, and made me pour some of the coffee on my wrist to prove it wasn’t super-heated before letting me into the media pen. People really do have strong feelings about that movie, huh?”  I’ve heard that movie described as ‘Cinematic Vandalism’, and I tend to agree. And yet here I am, standing directly NEXT to the media pen.

“They asked me twice to reassure them that I had no strongly negative feelings about The Last Jedi, and made me pour some of the coffee on my wrist to prove it wasn’t super-heated before letting me into the media pen. People really do have strong feelings about that movie, huh?”
I’ve heard that movie described as ‘Cinematic Vandalism’, and I tend to agree. And yet here I am, standing directly NEXT to the media pen.

“I ees ere to see Jon Dohnson and Army De Anas and Rain Johansson…. oo is yoo ere to see?”  Rather intriguingly for a European premiere, the ONLY confirmed attendee at this event was director Rian Johnson…. but surely the stars of the film who were in the Bond movie that just finished filming would attend? Surely Jamie Lee Curtis loves London? Surely Christopher Plummer would love to do some duty-free shopping? Surely Chris Evans would never disappoint his legion of fans?

“I ees ere to see Jon Dohnson and Army De Anas and Rain Johansson…. oo is yoo ere to see?”
Rather intriguingly for a European premiere, the ONLY confirmed attendee at this event was director Rian Johnson…. but surely the stars of the film who were in the Bond movie that just finished filming would attend? Surely Jamie Lee Curtis loves London? Surely Christopher Plummer would love to do some duty-free shopping? Surely Chris Evans would never disappoint his legion of fans?

“Wait… if they could weaponise hyperspace, why didn’t they do that for the Death Star? Or why did they wait til all but one of their ships was destroyed to do that? And why aren’t all space battles fought by tiny or medium sized cloaked ships hitting large ships from a vast distance? And if this franchise is called ‘star WARS’ why is everyone so crap at it?”  I can’t see the screens on the Odeon facade… so I’ll just assume they’re playing a Star Wars The Last Jedi highlights reel, and this explains the audience response.

“Wait… if they could weaponise hyperspace, why didn’t they do that for the Death Star? Or why did they wait til all but one of their ships was destroyed to do that? And why aren’t all space battles fought by tiny or medium sized cloaked ships hitting large ships from a vast distance? And if this franchise is called ‘star WARS’ why is everyone so crap at it?”
I can’t see the screens on the Odeon facade… so I’ll just assume they’re playing a Star Wars The Last Jedi highlights reel, and this explains the audience response.

“But why would Luke Skywalker DO ANY OF that????”  (And are we sure Rian Johnson is coming? I’m next to the media pen and could in theory pretend to BE A Media. I have a BLOG, damnit!!! Some of my journals get up to a dozen views, and even I don’t think they’re  ALL  from Russian bots!)

“But why would Luke Skywalker DO ANY OF that????”
(And are we sure Rian Johnson is coming? I’m next to the media pen and could in theory pretend to BE A Media. I have a BLOG, damnit!!! Some of my journals get up to a dozen views, and even I don’t think they’re ALL from Russian bots!)

“Well, sure that’s ALL possible … if she’s a Mary Sue.”  I should probably shut up…. and give thanks that my apartment is in an unfindable location in an armed compound well south of the Thames, and my servers are hidden beneath a glacier in an nonextradition country.

“Well, sure that’s ALL possible … if she’s a Mary Sue.”
I should probably shut up…. and give thanks that my apartment is in an unfindable location in an armed compound well south of the Thames, and my servers are hidden beneath a glacier in an nonextradition country.

“I think I’ve seen that movie, and I didn’t like it. Is that the one where Captain Spock defeats Thanos??”  You know what? Yeah.. more or less.

“I think I’ve seen that movie, and I didn’t like it. Is that the one where Captain Spock defeats Thanos??”
You know what? Yeah.. more or less.

“Now you stand here and think about how you’ve made hundreds of angry man-babies upset. Also, pose for the paparazzi and don’t listen to any of them”  Actually, for the record, while I didn’t like The Last Jedi, I did like both Looper (which Rian Johnson wrote and directed) and Rian Johnson’s earlier movie ‘Brick’

“Now you stand here and think about how you’ve made hundreds of angry man-babies upset. Also, pose for the paparazzi and don’t listen to any of them” Actually, for the record, while I didn’t like The Last Jedi, I did like both Looper (which Rian Johnson wrote and directed) and Rian Johnson’s earlier movie ‘Brick’

People were shouting out   “LANA!!! LANA!!!”   for this lady, and she did get briefly interviewed. But she’s not in the cast/crew, and not identified by wireimage. Still… bright pink jacket. My Pentax’s autofocus approves of the contrast, while the Nikon’s autofocus shrugs and keeps doing what it’s doing

People were shouting out “LANA!!! LANA!!!” for this lady, and she did get briefly interviewed. But she’s not in the cast/crew, and not identified by wireimage. Still… bright pink jacket. My Pentax’s autofocus approves of the contrast, while the Nikon’s autofocus shrugs and keeps doing what it’s doing

Towering almost implausibly over the red carpet revellers is Nathan Johnson, cousin of Rian and composer or several of his fims, as well as others. I’m not sure if there was a nano- or femto-second where he thought “ Hey, maybe Rian will pick me over John Williams to score The Last Jedi? ” when Rian was announced to direct. (And THIS is exactly why I should have been given a microphone and allowed to interview people, since I was already next to the media…)

Towering almost implausibly over the red carpet revellers is Nathan Johnson, cousin of Rian and composer or several of his fims, as well as others. I’m not sure if there was a nano- or femto-second where he thought “Hey, maybe Rian will pick me over John Williams to score The Last Jedi?” when Rian was announced to direct. (And THIS is exactly why I should have been given a microphone and allowed to interview people, since I was already next to the media…)

“Wait… they let HIM into the pen? WHY? And HOW? and….once again…. WHY??”  I might be no TLJ fan, but I actually had a photo I took of Rian Johnson at the Empire Awards last year when it snowed, and left it back in the office, but rain in the afternoon meant I couldn’t keep it dry so I left it. It would have been nice if he’d signed it…

“Wait… they let HIM into the pen? WHY? And HOW? and….once again…. WHY??”
I might be no TLJ fan, but I actually had a photo I took of Rian Johnson at the Empire Awards last year when it snowed, and left it back in the office, but rain in the afternoon meant I couldn’t keep it dry so I left it. It would have been nice if he’d signed it…

“I’m going to answer your questions… but I’m going to keep one eye over at THAT pen at all times”

“I’m going to answer your questions… but I’m going to keep one eye over at THAT pen at all times”

Random attendee spotted by an eagle-eyed fan in our pen… Kumail Nanjiani - writer and star of (for instance) the movie ‘The Big Sick’ and also a star of the TV series ‘Silicon Valley’ - one of about four or five TV Series I’ve watched this decade.

Random attendee spotted by an eagle-eyed fan in our pen… Kumail Nanjiani - writer and star of (for instance) the movie ‘The Big Sick’ and also a star of the TV series ‘Silicon Valley’ - one of about four or five TV Series I’ve watched this decade.

“No, I’m actually totally happy for Rian to field any and all questions, comments and feedback for The Last Jedi. I’ll deal with this movie, ‘Looper’, ‘Don Jon’ , and if you’re digiging really deep into my imdb entry, ‘Dancing at the Blue Iguana’ “  - Ram Bergman is a producer on this film.

“No, I’m actually totally happy for Rian to field any and all questions, comments and feedback for The Last Jedi. I’ll deal with this movie, ‘Looper’, ‘Don Jon’ , and if you’re digiging really deep into my imdb entry, ‘Dancing at the Blue Iguana’ “ - Ram Bergman is a producer on this film.

“Are you going to make everything about that Star Wars movie?”  Absolutely not. Especially because this is an Australian - Austraila’s own Katherine Langford, currently best known for being in the movie    ‘Love Simon’, whose premiere featured no cast but did involve a genuine ferris wheel   .

“Are you going to make everything about that Star Wars movie?” Absolutely not. Especially because this is an Australian - Austraila’s own Katherine Langford, currently best known for being in the movie ‘Love Simon’, whose premiere featured no cast but did involve a genuine ferris wheel.

“I’m going to let this uncomfortable silence between us just ride until one of us says something…” ”……” ”Are you okay with me letting it ride, Rian?” ”……” ”Oh… I see. You’re also letting it ride….. Aren’t you?” ”……” ”Damnit. Got me again”

“I’m going to let this uncomfortable silence between us just ride until one of us says something…”
”……”
”Are you okay with me letting it ride, Rian?”
”……”
”Oh… I see. You’re also letting it ride….. Aren’t you?”
”……”
”Damnit. Got me again”

He was introduced as ‘genuine hollywood royalty’ when he arrived, but my vestigial knowledge of the 1980s suggests  Don Johnson  is more ‘Television Royalty’ - primarily famous for the series ‘Miami Vice’. However he was also in Tarantino’s ‘Django Unchained’ and is in the upcoming ‘Watchmen’ sequel series… which might be the only thing writer/creator Damon Lindelof has done that I’m actually looking forward to.

He was introduced as ‘genuine hollywood royalty’ when he arrived, but my vestigial knowledge of the 1980s suggests Don Johnson is more ‘Television Royalty’ - primarily famous for the series ‘Miami Vice’. However he was also in Tarantino’s ‘Django Unchained’ and is in the upcoming ‘Watchmen’ sequel series… which might be the only thing writer/creator Damon Lindelof has done that I’m actually looking forward to.

“Look… hyperspace works like this. It’s like.. imagine a folded piece of paper in n-dimensions, bifurcated in on itself. Add enough energy, and… Oh. Right. You were actually unironically asking me about this movie. Well, I’m pleased” -  I’m also pleased to say that - LOL - Rian Johnson actually signed autographs in our area - including my Moleskine journal! I told him I’m looking forward to seeing this movie (I am - it’s not a Star Wars film after all) and thanked him. See? I can be allowed to mix with people like a human being.

“Look… hyperspace works like this. It’s like.. imagine a folded piece of paper in n-dimensions, bifurcated in on itself. Add enough energy, and… Oh. Right. You were actually unironically asking me about this movie. Well, I’m pleased” - I’m also pleased to say that - LOL - Rian Johnson actually signed autographs in our area - including my Moleskine journal! I told him I’m looking forward to seeing this movie (I am - it’s not a Star Wars film after all) and thanked him. See? I can be allowed to mix with people like a human being.

Rian Johnson actually interrupted signing in our pen, saying   “if you’ll excuse me, I have to hug Ana de Armas”   - she’s in this movie, and best known for being Ryan Gosling’s character’s hologram girlfriend ‘JOI’ in Blade Runner 2049.

Rian Johnson actually interrupted signing in our pen, saying “if you’ll excuse me, I have to hug Ana de Armas” - she’s in this movie, and best known for being Ryan Gosling’s character’s hologram girlfriend ‘JOI’ in Blade Runner 2049.

“You really didn’t have to call me ‘Babysweets’. I typically hurt people who call me that. Really badly.”  Ana De Armas is in this movie,as stated, but she was actually NOT on the list of attendees provided to the media (which hilariously we were also given copies of in our pen). Sadly, for fans of Daniel Craig (who is also in this movie, and in the next James Bond film which Ana De Armas also is), Craig did not attend.

“You really didn’t have to call me ‘Babysweets’. I typically hurt people who call me that. Really badly.”
Ana De Armas is in this movie,as stated, but she was actually NOT on the list of attendees provided to the media (which hilariously we were also given copies of in our pen). Sadly, for fans of Daniel Craig (who is also in this movie, and in the next James Bond film which Ana De Armas also is), Craig did not attend.

It’s 23:57 as I’m typing this (or, if my boss is reading this, it’s 20:57 as I’m typing this), and right now I’m just thinking  “Ana De Armas is hugging a man who made a movie I don’t like, and she’s looking at me while doing it, and I’m STILL to a large extent distracted by the woman in the background with that weird cerise and turquoise scarf even though I already used photoshop to both partially blur AND desaturate her. ” Life isn’t so much unfair as it is… kind of strange.

It’s 23:57 as I’m typing this (or, if my boss is reading this, it’s 20:57 as I’m typing this), and right now I’m just thinking “Ana De Armas is hugging a man who made a movie I don’t like, and she’s looking at me while doing it, and I’m STILL to a large extent distracted by the woman in the background with that weird cerise and turquoise scarf even though I already used photoshop to both partially blur AND desaturate her.” Life isn’t so much unfair as it is… kind of strange.

I’m not entirely sure what happened with this photo… but then it really has been a strange kind of day.

I’m not entirely sure what happened with this photo… but then it really has been a strange kind of day.

“AHAHAHAHA…that’s so funny. But… what was your question again?”  Shooting diagonally into a media pen provides some good opportunities for photography… I wonder if I’ll ever be allowed to or invited to do it again.

“AHAHAHAHA…that’s so funny. But… what was your question again?”
Shooting diagonally into a media pen provides some good opportunities for photography… I wonder if I’ll ever be allowed to or invited to do it again.

“They’re calling me K-Langz. I thought people stopped doing that with names, like, five years ago…?”

“They’re calling me K-Langz. I thought people stopped doing that with names, like, five years ago…?”

“And you! Don’t do drugs! And Stay in school! And.. I don’t have time to dispense more advice than that. But start with those two things at least!!”  - Don Johnson hurries along the crowd en route to be interviewed.

“And you! Don’t do drugs! And Stay in school! And.. I don’t have time to dispense more advice than that. But start with those two things at least!!” - Don Johnson hurries along the crowd en route to be interviewed.

“You know…. I think that guy’s going to be fine. I Really do.”

“You know…. I think that guy’s going to be fine. I Really do.”

“I was going to ask if SHE had any life advice for me, but I think Don Johnson covered most of the things I need to work on. I guess it’s time to roll out Old Faithful…. ‘what was <insert name of co-star> like to work with!”  - Knives Out actually has a DEEP cast of A-grade talent - from the attending ones, to Daniel Craig, Captain America’s Chris Evans, Australia’s (other) Own Toni Collette, Jamie Lee Curtis, Michael Shannon, Christopher Plummer.. Frank Oz…. even M.Emmett Walsh.

“I was going to ask if SHE had any life advice for me, but I think Don Johnson covered most of the things I need to work on. I guess it’s time to roll out Old Faithful…. ‘what was <insert name of co-star> like to work with!” - Knives Out actually has a DEEP cast of A-grade talent - from the attending ones, to Daniel Craig, Captain America’s Chris Evans, Australia’s (other) Own Toni Collette, Jamie Lee Curtis, Michael Shannon, Christopher Plummer.. Frank Oz…. even M.Emmett Walsh.

Night falls, the tube network winds down, and even the Extinction Rebellion protesters are pondering what to chain or glue or otherwise affix themselves to next… and our interviewer has still not quite reached the bottom of the list of co-stars… but for me… it’s over..

Night falls, the tube network winds down, and even the Extinction Rebellion protesters are pondering what to chain or glue or otherwise affix themselves to next… and our interviewer has still not quite reached the bottom of the list of co-stars… but for me… it’s over..

ALMOST over…

“I’ll look at your journal later, babysweets - I promise!!”  And I believe you.

“I’ll look at your journal later, babysweets - I promise!!”
And I believe you.

So that was that! The end of a long, strange day, where I went from #18 on a 6:40am list to ALONE in Leicester Square futilely looking for a security person even onsite to hand out wristbands at 9:15am after they’d started handing them out some 20minutes earlier and simply vanished…. to wristband #89 at NOON…. to somehow mysteriously finding it off my wrist (not kidding.. no idea how it happened) at about 5:00pm… to being led into a late pen, front row, fourth from the media, at about 6:00pm.

… and then I met Rian Johnson and he was nice and signed my Moleskine and I didn’t say anything REALLY stupid! …. and tomorrow I’ll get to do a variation of this again! And again, hopefully four more times after that.

Until.. then!?

facebook, twitter, instagram, archive…. all that, and goodnight. <checks watch> I mean GOOD MORNING.
(but if my boss is reading this : I meant Goodnight)

With thanks to Rian Johnson. Genuinely nice guy. I’d totally buy him a beer, and I’d even shut up and let him do all the talking.

With thanks to Rian Johnson. Genuinely nice guy. I’d totally buy him a beer, and I’d even shut up and let him do all the talking.