The German Premiere of The Day After Tomorrow - Part 1
Berlin, May 21, 2004
It all started at the Electric Entertainment Message Boards. In April 2004, we discussed the German premiere of The Day After Tomorrow , or rather the dates of the German premiere, and we talked about meeting at the red carpet to watch the stars walk by and maybe take some pictures. Because we didn't make it to The Gathering in 1999 this would also be the first time to actually meet in the "real world".
We found out that -- because of the worldwide release of the film -- there were several premieres in different countries, all in a timeframe of only a few days, including
- May 21: Berlin, German premiere
- May 24: New York, US premiere
- May 26: London, UK premiere
- May 27/28: Official release date
- May 31: Tokyo, Japan premiere
So, Andrea and I decided to maybe meet at the premiere in Berlin.
At first I was really enthusiastic about it, because I also thought of the "exclusive content" that I could add to our site, Centropoholics.com, and of the fun of actually meeting some fellow 'holics, but then I thought of standing at the red carpet for a long time, only to see the stars pass by for a couple of minutes, and not having a chance of actually seeing the film.
Andrea and I agreed to inform each other, if we should actually decide to go to Berlin, so that we could coordinate our routes and hotel bookings.
The days passed by and I felt like I didn't want to go to Berlin, just because I thought it would be a bad idea to make the trip just for a couple of pictures from the red carpet. But then I found several sweepstakes of tickets for the premiere, so I decided to try my luck there, even knowing that the chance of winning was not very big.
Unfortunately I couldn't get my hands on any tickets, but some time later, Andrea wrote me a mail, telling me she had won two tickets for the premiere, and she asked me if I wanted to accompany her. Of course I said "yes!!". So we planned our trips and Andrea booked the hotel rooms for us.
In the following week, we were literally flooding our contact person Mr. Kai Reichel from boxoffice Filmmarketing, the company that organized the premiere, with questions about the event. He was kind enough to answer all of them, saying that he simply took pleasure in making the dream of a fan come true.
We also asked him about whether or not we would be allowed to take pictures at the premiere, and maybe get access to the special VIP after show party. He granted our wish to take part in the after show party, and he said we were allowed to take pictures at the red carpet and the after show party as well, but not in the theater, as we had to hand in our camera at the checkroom in front of the theater entrance.
Mr. Reichel also said that if we had any further questions on-site we would find him at the press counter next to the red carpet, and he also gave us his cellphone number, in spite of us having flooded him with tons of questions already, which we found very nice of him.
On Monday before the premiere, Andrea finally got the tickets: An official invitation by 20th Century Fox for her, with me being registered as her company.
Andrea was going to travel to Berlin on Thursday already, as she had to take a 6-hour-trip by train from Karlsruhe, where she lives. For me, coming from Hamburg, the trip by bus was to take only 3 hours, so I decided to go to Berlin on Friday only.
And so we did. Andrea went to Berlin on Thursday, and I met her in the hotel on Friday, the day of the premiere.
On Thursday Andrea had already spotted the region around the theater where the actual event was going to take place. On our trips we had conversations via short messages over our cellular phones, which was fun, as I could already tell her on my way when I would arrive in Berlin and in the hotel.
We finally met in the hotel, and soon found out that we where both hungry. Andrea said she had found a nice restaurant just next to the theater, and we set out to go and eat there. This was also a good opportunity to see how far preparations for the premiere had progressed, and if the red carpet had already been laid out.
Coming round a corner walking into the Karl-Marx-Allee where the theater "Kosmos UFA-Palast" was located we could already see the huge posters in front of it from afar.
Andrea told me about a weekly market she saw standing right next to where they were building up the frame for the red carpet. It had turned 4 o'clock in the afternoon and the market was still there. We took a look around, and decided to wait for taking some pictures until after eating at the nearby restaurant.
So after having eaten at the restaurant next to the theater, we went on to take some pictures. Some people from the market were still busy cleaning up, and in front of the theater the red carpet was slowly unwrapped. We were mingling with the other people standing nearby, watching the fuss and taking pictures. We felt really good, because we knew that we were going to walk on this red carpet -- which was just being unwrapped and vacuumed again -- the very same evening.
Well, after quite some time of taking pictures and watching the preparations, we decided to go back to the hotel in order to change for the premiere and return.
When we came back, everything was ready, the market had gone, and the red carpet had been completely laid out. Just in front of the red carpet entrance, there was already a small group of Greenpeace activists gathering, handing out leaflets about global warming, surrounded by the press, that diligently took pictures from the green-dressed guys.
There were several desks at the beginning of the red carpet. On the left side, there were the desks for guests, arranged by last names. On the right, there were the desks for winners of various sweepstakes, for the main sponsors and for the press people to register with the organization team.
As we had an official invitation of 20th Century Fox, we were turning left to go to the guests reception. We had to show a security guard our invitation, and he reffered us to desk "Q-Z", where a woman gave us the tickets on "ribbons" and blue badges for our wrists. From Mr. Reichel we had heard about silver badges as well, and we thought that those were for the after show party, so we asked the woman about getting silver badges, and she denied and said that we wouldn't be marked on her list to get them.
We were upset by this and decided to go the press counter, to see if we could find Mr. Reichel and ask him about those silver badges. We found him and he welcomed us to the premiere, and we explained our dilemma to him.
He said that this was not what was agreed on, and he said he'd be back in a second, disappeared, and returned with two silver badges, that he personally attached to our wrists. We thanked him a lot for everything, and set off to finally start our walk over the red carpet.
Surprisingly no one from the press (who was standing on the right side of the red carpet) or fans (who were standing on the left) took notice of us. :o)
So we made our way to the theater entrance, and had to hand in our camera at the checkroom next to it. Going through one of the three airport-like metal detectors we entered the theater itself, and we were finally there.
... to be continued ...