Although taking the London Underground was not something new to me, when I saw the poster of the film We Are X on the walls of the tube station, I could not help but shooting tons of photographs of and with them. I did not count exactly how many stations in which this sheet of ad was advertised, but basically this ad appeared to all of the the tube stations I stepped in.
In order to welcome the great day of possibly meeting Yoshiki and the director Stephen Kijak in person in a short distance at the film’s Premiere in London, as early as I could, I went to check out the Picturehouse Central location at Piccadilly Circus in London. It was arranged that there would be Premiere of the film We Are X followed by a Q&A session with them.
I arrived at the venue three hours in advance. The Picturehouse Central is situated in London’s 19th-century, Grade II-listed Trocadero building. It is gorgeous inside and out, housing a coffee shop on the first floor and a cafe on the second, where the screens on the third floor and up. Visiting this building could be of a relaxing and rewarding tour itself.
Immediately after entering the Picturehouse, an enormous red staircase captured my eyes. The red tiles shined all over the floor. Above the colorful staircase, countless number of light bulbs were hanging down from the ceiling irregularly. The red staircase served as the “Red Carpet” and I was told that anyone who comes in must walk through and up on the red staircase before he/she could reach the upper floors for press conference, reception party, and to any of the screens for the films. I found a coffee table upstairs for myself and planned to spend the time before the film premiere enjoying my afternoon cake there on top of the red staircase. That must be the best spot to watch Yoshiki walk up, I thought.
After half way through my cake, unexpected I was asked to move away from the coffee table – the best spot to catch Yoshiki. The staff needed to reshuffle the seats and tables for better layout for the film premiere. Disappointedly, I rushed to finish my cake and left my seat. At the same time, I started seeing people coming in with professional cameras, flowers, and gifts. The Picturehouse was filled with excitement, press, fans, and my heartbeat.
Suddenly, a familiar face appeared in front of me and this was the director. “Stephen,” I said to him. I thanked him for tweeting my previous article about the We Are X film. His reaction told me that he did not know me and was surprised to hear me talking to him while he was expecting someone whom he knew to escort him to the press conference area, which was held at the cafe on the second floor.
Unfortunately the responsible person did not show up on time to welcome this VIP. Poor Mr. Director was stuck at the entrance with a security guard blocking his way. I tried to convinced the security guard that Stephen is indeed the director of the film and he should let him in. The guard insisted that without any proof he would not believe that Stephen was the director, and therefore could not let him in.
I, knowing what was going on for the past few hours, decided to help this stranger out. Several minutes later, I helped him find the organizer whom I met earlier in the cafe, and eventually the director found a way to go… Stephen was so pleased that I found him the right person so he could gain access to the press conference. Before he entered the prohibited area, he gave me a big “thank you” by accepting my request and gladly took a selfie with me.[20170228©winnieup.StephenKijak@WeAreXPremiere.London]
It was indeed an honor to have the director tweeted my article ~ [http://winnieup.com/20170214-my-valentine-we-are-x/] and quite an interesting experience for me to be able to help and take selfie with the director. Such an incident made me feel fabulous.
It was a quarter till six o’clock, and my heart was beating faster and faster as the time went by. Yoshiki was still nowhere to be found. According to his Facebook, his arrival time was 6:00pm. It was a long lasting 15 minutes. Just as what I would usually do, I walked around and talked to strangers, staff, and random people. A superstar like Yoshiki would always be late rather than being early or on time. That was what I had in my mind.
Life is, as presented in the We Are X film, unexpected, unpredictable, interesting, beautiful, and full of surprises.
While I was walking down the staircase trying to chat with the staff again, screaming noise came from the entrance. Before I could realize and react, a gorgeous gentleman with his beautiful face behind Ray-Ban sunglasses inside a red-and-black velvet long jacket appeared in front of me from virtually nowhere. “YOSHIKI” was the only word that leaked out from my month, and the only action I was able to take was to insert my right hand into my right pocket and got my iPhone out from it to shoot a photo of this smiling-and-walking-quietly-but-quickly celebrity within a nano-second of time.
I also carried a Nikon camera my father lent me and at that time the Nikon camera had zero efficiency and played no role to the event since my brain and arms were too slow to react. Several pounds of weight that was hanging around my neck made no sense to me at this particular moment.
Finally, this image was the only photo of Yoshiki I took with my iPhone before the Premiere, while I spent all afternoon strategically figuring out how to get the best angle and take the greatest shots of him with my Nikon camera.
Life is out of control most of the time, so is the camera sometimes.
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