Let’s forget the Dunn School of Marketing for a moment. I know what you have been waiting for – the booty. You shall see said booty in this post, accompanied by a few more comments on the whole procedure of the
red green carpet. The hat-trick has been done. And yet the third Hobbit premiere did not really become the ultimate that I had hoped it would be, mainly because there was less booty than I had hoped (see yesterday’s Part 1). But that doesn’t take away from the fact that this journey that started in the spring of 2012 has been hugely fun, majorly inspirational and personally fulfilling. And it is blessing me ever more with hindsight… You’ll see what I mean when you read my post. But without any further ado, here are the images.
This is the closest Mr A came to us:
The last image is the moment when Mr A’s publicist steers him away *boo* ;-). I think there may have been some frantic shouting from our corner. I can’t quite remember, tbh, but it’s possible that I may have chimed in, too.
As Mr A turned away to start his path down the green carpet, I kept shooting in continuous mode. At 3.9 frames per second, I got a good number of shots. Of his back. That’s when none of the millions of people who were milling about on the green carpet got in the way. Here are a few highlights:
None of this is anything to write home about
with the exception of the OOA in them. Without going into technicalities (I’ll leave those for an *ooof*), the reason I was am not enchanted with the photos is that they are grainy (due to shooting at a high ISO/light sensitivity) and strangely coloured (due to cross-lighting).
Here is the whole lot of them in a slideshow:
What looks like an eternity on photos was actually over in a flash. The EXIF data on my photos tell me that I took the first image of RA’s crown at 18:24pm, and the last one at 18.25pm. One minute! Marathon fan interaction. Mr A has perfected his approach. He probably only signed his initials, too…
I will not deny that a little flash of disappointment hit me when I realized that Mr A was not going to come within ideal shooting range. But at the time I had no opportunity to muse about that as the show went on and other people moved into my field of vision. No, I wasn’t really that disappointed – somehow it is all about expectation management, and if anything I might have been disappointed that I again was not in the photography pen, but the fact that RA was nowhere near didn’t really devastate me. I probably also realised at once that we had had our special moment in Berlin – which in hindsight is now GOLD compared to London *ggg*. Little did I know then, eh? But the excitement of the moment takes you with it, anyway – when RA was gone, the next celeb turned up, and so I was certainly busy with my camera all the way, no time to analyse and get disappointed. Actually, even looking through the camera and focussing on RA the few seconds that he was visible to us, I realized afterwards that I was not really feeling the moment or experiencing it at all. I was busy shooting, concentrating on getting a clear picture of the person in my viewfinder. Who the person was, was almost secondary. Looking at him through the lens I did not see *him*, I saw a body which I was trying to get into focus. And you know what – I am fine with that. That’s the way it is at an event like that and if I am shooting – I photograph, but I do not experience. And maybe that has been good this time. Maybe I am not as disappointed as others because I had made peace with this dichotomy at a premiere: If I shoot, I cannot experience but I get a picture. If I opt to experience, I cannot shoot and get no picture. I am almost glad that the former option appeals to me more – 1) a sign that I *am* a photographer (*phew*) and 2) a sign that I yet have my priorities right.
He is, and that is clear *every* *fucking* *time* I see him as himself at an event, a bit of a puzzle. He did not appear unfriendly to me (from what I could see), but to me he also exudes the whiff of distance that I Cumberbatch has. With RA it is slightly less authoritarian and assertive than Cumberbatch’s. RA exudes distance that might be motivated by embarrassment and humility, and to me communicates something like “you’re very kind to be cheering for me, but really, I am not worth it, and actually, I’d rather you didn’t because this attention makes me feel slightly uncomfortable. But ok, I’ll go along with it because this is my job, and I have been brought up to fulfill the expectations of others and put their wishes before mine”. I guess he is very grateful for the attention as such, and he understands that his career is also a reflection of fan demand, but he may feel uncomfortable when directly faced with it. Thus he is more than happy to deflect that attention on others – and to have a publicist who can make the decisions for him *ggg*. A good boy he really is. Well-raised, polite, humble, sweet, eager to please, but easily overwhelmed.
Am I in APM here??? A sensitive artistic soul who can switch on pro mode and look self-assured in front of an interviewer and appear to take it all in his stride – but inside is reeling at it all, shaking his head that this is happening to him…and not to sure whether he really likes it or not.
But hey, what do I know? I am not in his head, I am just interpreting, based on some of his comments on the red carpet experience. My very own red carpet experiences were put into perspective, too. I very quickly realized there and then that what I had perceived as mildly disappointing in Berlin 2013 was actually fabulous luck. The number of acceptable pictures from 2013 proves it. And what you make of a premiere, depends entirely on yourself. There is no guarantee that you will get what you want (i.e. pictures, a signature, or the opportunity to interact briefly). The conclusion is that the perceived success of attending a premiere really depends on your very own expectation management. There are so many variables in a premiere – number of fans, number of celebs, number of media, weather, location, layout of the site to name but a few – that you can’t expect anything really. There is little if any opportunity for interaction – purely because the demand for the celebs is higher than what they can actually give in the situation. A signature is doable, as is a photo, possibly even a selfie. My favoured approach is to see the event as a fun day out, preferably in the company of like-minded friends. I was lucky that I had Hariclea, cRAmerry and Linda60 with me. Even though we got but a glimpse of Mr A, we had huge fun – four old bags among the predominantly much younger fans. We made the whole weekend a fun excursion. And we still got what we wanted – lots of opportunity to chat about our favourite topic. What more can you want?
So, the Armitage hangover is slowly lifting. And you know what? I am glad this is over now. No more Hobbit premieres. *phew* I’d attend a premiere again, of course, but preferably in the summer, in a smaller venue. Urban and the Shed Crew, do you hear me?