The life of a blogger occasionally provides opportunities I never would have guessed I’d have, and last week’s Disney junket to Los Angeles was a prime example. That’s how I found myself, along with a group of fellow bloggers, walking down the red carpet into the El Capitan Theatre in Hollywood for the world premiere of Muppets Most Wanted.
An experience like this is only partly about the movie itself (come back to GeekDad on Friday for my review) – it’s a chance to soak in the glamour and excitement that the name “Hollywood” has come to represent, to rub elbows with people way more famous than you will ever be, and of course to make the countless people lining the barricades on Hollywood Boulevard jealous of you. This case was no exception, including also a few Muppet-specific extras, and an after-party that was an absolute blast (though curiously lacking in actual Muppets).
The crowd in the El Capitan was huge – we mere bloggers were consigned to the back of the balcony. The organist played Disney songs, then transitioned into Muppet songs, then disappeared into the floorboards. Then, just when everyone was ready for the lights to go down and the curtains to open, Statler and Waldorf appeared in a theater box to stage right. They then proceeded to provide a few minutes of quality heckling, to uproarious laughter and applause. Honestly, if the experience had ended there, I would have been perfectly happy with everything.
The after party was a chaotic, constantly-moving horde of people, with occasional clusters around people with famous faces. I managed to get a picture with Ricky Gervais, and talk for about three seconds with Tina Fey, who alas had to leave before I could get a photo with her. A fellow blogger, Vanessa Diaz (aka The Queen of Swag), and I had a great chat with songwriter Bret McKenzie (who won an Oscar for “Man or Muppet” from 2011’s The Muppets) – more on him when I post about the interviews we did with the film’s crew. It was all pretty overwhelming, honestly, and I never really knew which way to go or how to even pretend to fit in with the Hollywood crowd. But it was still fun, and an experience I’ll remember for many years.
Check out the gallery below for the best photos from that evening. Muppets Most Wanted opens in theaters this Friday, March 21.
Note: Attending the Muppets Most Wanted premiere and after-party was part of a press junket I attended that was paid for by Disney. All opinions expressed are my own.