Roll Out the Red Carpet
I have never had the opportunity to cover a red carpet event. Living in the suburbs of DC, this is not something that presents itself very often. When I was asked if I wanted to cover a '300' and 'Blade Runner' event at Comic-Con International, I almost literally jumped at the chance. I had been looking forward to this event since the offer was made weeks ago.
While I managed to have fun at the event, it was a lot more work than I thought it would be. I was thinking "how difficult can it be to stand somewhere and take pictures of people as they walk by?" Boy was I in for a surprise. Once inside the gates I started to feel a little intimidated. Looking at the other signs I was surrounded by people from Variety, USA Today, IMDB.com, TV Guide ... well, you get the idea. They are all around with these huge professional cameras and recording equipment, and here I am with my little Kodak camera. They had entire teams while I had me.
We were asked to be in place an hour before things were scheduled to start. I think that someone started feeling bad for us and came around with bottles of water. My allocated space was probably around 14-15 inches wide, really not much wider than the sign with my name on it. I was suddenly faced with visions of being a sardine.
Once the stars start arriving there was a steady stream of people that I didn't know. This is probably my bad. I knew Frank Miller and the stars of the movies, but when they started bringing by directors, musicians and other behind the scenes people I was completely lost. Even though I didn't know who several people were I took their pictures. I figure I can sit down with the pics later and do some research.
Everyone that I met was very gracious and took the time to stop for photos and talk to everyone with questions. I was placed directly across from the Spartan Warrior you see above, so all of the women took extra time to stop right in front of my camera. Sean Young seemed to be having a great time posing for "flirty" pictures with the warrior. Hal Sparks admitted to being on a new diet after having seen '300,' He said that seeing the movie convinced him to start going to the gym and now he lives on a diet of broccoli and the beating hearts of his enemies. I'm not so sure about the last part, but you never know. Joanna Cassidy came through looking as beautiful as ever. The cast of "Return to the House on Haunted Hill" came by, hopefully on the way to somewhere a little less haunted.
I thought that this would be a relatively quick event and having skipped lunch I had planned on an early dinner. Two hours later things were finally starting to come to a close. I picked up my notebook and camera and started the trek back to the hotel. What I thought would be a quick and easy event turned into an evening of work. Having been through this only once I find myself having a whole new respect for photographers who do it night after night.