Thursday, August 11, 2011

Cowboys & Aliens World Premiere

Another of the many highlights of Comic-Con 2011 was the red carpet world premiere of Cowboys & Aliens on Saturday July 23rd. There were several ways to win passes to the event including a scavenger hunt for gold bricks (some of which held tickets), and a signing held on July 22nd at which Jon Favreau himself handed out bricks, each with a pass inside. C&A co-writer Bob Orci was also out-and-about that day.
Photo below courtesy @patmc4fun
Photo below courtesy @LOST_4815162342
To be honest I was somewhat underwhelmed by the Cowboys & Aliens trailers I had seen so I had planned another day at the convention center on Saturday. However, Saturday morning one of our group with a pass wasn't feeling well and I was offered it in her stead. I gratefully accepted.

We were told that anyone with a pass arriving before 4PM would be guaranteed a seat. In order to get a really good seat most of the Barracks folk departed Saturday morning for the theater and were one of the first in line. I departed a little later, picked up my pass from @patmc4fun who was waiting in line for the Community panel, and made my way to the theater. On arrival there was a line of maybe 50 people outside, but the line moved relatively quickly and soon I was in. After checking my cameras and going through security I entered a large waiting area (thankfully with comfortable seats, free beverages, and complimentary C&A-branded beef jerky). I said hello to my friends who'd already been there several hours, then grabbed a seat.

A little while later @patmc4fun arrived. After waiting for 3 hours he had been shut out of the Community panel! It was an all-too-common story at Comic-Con 2011; hopefully changes will be made for next year to reduce the sky-high disappointment levels.
Below photo courtesy @BonnieJGreen

As we waited inside, the red carpet area was readied outside.
Below photo courtesy @Scoutpost

We waited and waited and waited. This was the worst part of the day. It would have been nice to have something to keep us occupied, a movie, music or a visit by some of the celebs. It was painfully long wait, especially for those who had arrived early that morning.
Below photo courtesy @patmc4fun

Finally, shortly before 7PM, we were allowed to head for the theater in groups. We walked by the red carpet just as the action started; I believe Favreau and Daniel Craig may have been out at that point.
Below 2 photos courtesy @LOST_4815162342

Apparently the venue is not normally a movie theater, so the C&A team had to bring in a screen and extra sound equipment to bring it up to snuff.
Below photo courtesy @LOST_48152342

The reward! After waiting eons for the show to begin, my Barracks buddies enjoyed some of the best seats in the house, 3 or 4 rows from the front.
Below photo courtesy @BonnieJGreen

Meanwhile, @patmc4fun and I still had a fine view from the mezzanine, 4 rows in. Although we didn't see it in person, the crowd in the theater did watch the live red carpet arrivals on the big screen.
Below photo courtesy @patmc4funBefore the film, Favreau came out on stage to introduce some of the actors and production team.
Below photo courtesy @patmc4fun

You may have heard of some of these guys -- Daniel Craig (huge applause!). Harrison Ford (even louder!). Olivia Wilde (woo-hoo!).
Below photo courtesy @BonnieJGreen

Um, Steven Spielberg. Ron Howard. Brian Grazer. Sam Rockwell. Adam Beach.
Below photo courtesy @andalone

Keith Carradine. Clancy Brown. And more. What a cast. And what an honour and thrill to be in the same room as so many Hollywood heavyweights. It was great to be able to feedback our love and appreciation through applause.
Below photo courtesy @andalone

Here's a view of the audience that Ron Howard took from the stage. I think I'm in the upper mezzanine, close to the top-left corner of the picture.

I was very pleasantly surprise by Cowboys & Aliens the film. I thought it was a lot of fun. Daniel Craig and Harrison Ford were fantastic; it was Ford's best role in quite a few years. The story was straightforward and made no apologies for it -- bad aliens need to be defeated by good cowboys. It reminded me a bit like Raiders of the Lost Ark in that respect -- an uncomplicated thrill-ride with fun roles and good performances all-around.

Favreau had one more trick up his sleeve -- a full-on Hollywood after-party outside the theater following the movie. It wasn't a chintzy affair either -- plenty of tasty food, drinks, and an open bar, staffed by what seemed like a team of hundreds. Music. Top-notch.
Below photo courtesy @patmc4fun
Below 3 photos courtesy @LOST_48152342Below 2 photos courtesy @patmc4fun
As @patmc4fun and I exited the theater we happened upon Jon Favreau at the party, mobbed by adoring fans. I heard that Bob Orci was also out for a bit, but I think most of the stars of the movie either made brief appearances near the entrance or skipped out altogether.
Below photo courtesy @patmc4fun

The only recognizable face I saw later in the evening was Grant Bowler who played Captain Gault (captain of the Kahana) on LOST. I said hello to him and he graciously posed for a few photographs. He even gave @andalone a kiss on the cheek, which was very sweet.
Below photo courtesy @BonnieJGreen

Happy campers! After a great film, good food, and a few drinks the interminably long wait that marked much of our daylight hours was forgiven and forgotten.
Below 2 photos courtesy @BonnieJGreen
Below photo courtesy @patmc4fun

Below are a series of publicity photos taken at the world premiere, to give a non-fuzzy view of what the guests looked like that evening.

1 comment:

  1. Ahh, what a day! Too bad I missed seeing you there.