London: 25 February 2010
Tim Burton has re-imagined the Lewis Carroll Victorian classic tale only this time it is in 3D and has Mad Hatter Johnny Depp as the big draw. The Square hosted the Royal World Premiere tonight and it does not get much bigger than that.
A leaf-green carpet decorated with the name of the film ran the length of the Square. Oddly shaped topiary was spaced along the edges reminiscent of Edward Scissorhands (remember him?). The main feature of the event was the rain. It rained pretty much all day and all through the event and all through folks journey home. Fans from all over the world queued overnight in appalling conditions just to see JD and the cast.
Germany, Japan, Italy, Brazil, Poland, France and South Africa were all represented. Many were costumed and had made themselves up as characters from the film.
I went to the Square at five in the morning and was really lucky to get a great spot. By seven a.m. there were already hundreds on the fanline. Barriers went up early in the morning and that helped to keep things orderly.
When the event got underway, black umbrellas gave me even more of a challenge to get good shots. Autograph hunters had more problems though. Rain and paper do not get along. Cameras too got a good soaking. JD is a diamond with fans. We were told by security that he would do media duties before coming to the fanline and that he would sign the whole fanline. That is exactly what happened. One signature only and no time for two-heads poses though. Thanks JD, from all your fans.
The rain hampered any fanline efforts by the cast and stars though the fans around me did pretty well - our position near the paps made our area a natural place for them to come when they heard their names called out whilst being papped. Prince Charles and Camilla's arrival and swift entry to the cinema signalled the end as we were cleared out immediately afterwards. I skipped back to base soaked through to get down to editing. Many others had a much longer and wetter journey home. A truly dedicated bunch of fans.