Just when I think I’ve been too lucky with the events I’ve already been to through my placement and that surely, my luck has to run out, I get the opportunity to attend another huge event again.
Last Thursday I was extremely fortunate to attend the premiere of the most anticipated movie of the year – Black Panther. The European premiere. A premiere!
If you’ve read up on my monthly recaps of my placement year, you’ll know that I’ve been to quite a few private screenings of movies which take place around a week before they are released in the UK. These private screenings take place in the Mayfair Hotel to an audience of around 100 people, all mainly press and PRs. Some private screenings have even had the added bonus of an actor or director from the movie.
But this one, this was very different.
Most of the premieres I’ve heard about happening in London, usually take place in the Odeon in Leceister Square with large black screens closing out the commoners and tourists from the glitzy ordeal happening right under their noses.
I don’t know why the Hammersmith Apollo was chosen as the location for Marvel’s recent movie, but it made things a lot easier for us to get to, which was a bonus as we were running late. I don’t think I’ve ever ingested a Wagamamas as quick.
When we arrived at around 6.30pm, the queue was huge. I’m taking around the corner, down the street, down another street and around another corner. The movie was due to begin at 7pm but there was no hope of that happening with all of these people still outside.
The layout was different to that of a Leicester Square premiere (not speaking from experience, just going on what I was told) where the invitees were not able to walk the red carpet with the celebrities, as there was no red carpet. All of the actors/actresses and celebs in attendance had their own private red carpet at the side of the Apollo, away from the public.
I’ve seen pictures from many movie premieres and know that they can be quite a glamorous occasion. As I only got my ticket on the day of the event while I was in work, I was afraid that I was going to show up very underdressed. But that wasn’t the case.
It was a very mixed style. There were people dressed very casual and there were some dressed in black tie. The majority of celebs were in black tie and glitzy dresses. Another aspect to the dress code was a lot of African-style clothing. A lot of colourful print, long tunics, head dresses and native African outfits. It was amazing to see, and especially to see so many people dressed this way.
Once we found our seats and were finished spotting celebrities (namely Louisa Johnston, Leona Lewis, a guy from Rizzlekicks, some X Factor contestants and my favourite – Marcel from Love Island, oh, and the guy that does the weather on GMB) we were treated to a mini rave before the movie began.
Clara Amfo was host for the night and introduced the director onto the stage who then introduced all the stars from the show to join him on stage – from Lupita Nyong’o to Michael B. Jordan (who then walked past our seats a few minutes into the film and god damn, he is a beautiful man). Not to be confused with Michael Jordan the basketball player. I don’t think they’re related either
Black Panther – is it any good?
You’re probably wondering when I’m actually going to talk about the bloody movie, and well now I am. Is it good? Yes. Is it one of Marvel’s best? Yes. Is it worth going to see? Absolutely.
With such amazing leading actors and actresses, this movie is one for the history books. A black superhero, strong leading black women and a cast that is 90% black as well as it’s director – in Clara Amfo’s words, Black Panther is ‘Black, black-ity, black.’
It was an honour to sit in the same room as all of these amazing actors, creatives as well as all of the successful celebrities that were in attendance – Stormzy, Daniel Sturridge, etc. etc. – and witness this movie that will go down in pop culture history as a momentous occasion the world has been waiting for.
It was also an honour to be one of the first people in Europe to see this movie, and the premiere will definitely be an event that I will remember from my placement year for a very long time.