Wednesday, November 07, 2007
'Beowulf' battles and Angelina Jolie approval
From CNN Entertainment Producer Douglas Hyde in Los Angeles:

Monday night's red-carpet premiere of "Beowulf" turned out to be interesting for a number of reasons.

"Beowulf," as you might have read, is an animated version of the classic tale that some of us were forced to read in school. And if you think the story was full of histrionics, you should have seen the premiere in L.A.'s Westwood neighborhood. (Watch Angelina Jolie talk about filming "like being in your pajamas together")

First off, the "Beowulf" people went all out. They closed off an entire block. They built a big, rocky, spooky papier-mache edifice that said "Beowulf" and had dry-ice fog swirling around it. It was exactly as the studio desired: very dramatic.

Meanwhile, there was also some drama going on in the penned-in area where the media has set up, waiting for the stars to come by.

At red-carpet events, there's a pecking order to media locations -- first spot goes to "Entertainment Tonight," then "Access Hollywood," and on down the line -- and one of the down-the-line names wasn't happy with their spot. They left in protest. Then another media firm got into an argument with a TV network, siccing security on an employee. The employee wasn't happy: "What goes around, comes around. I won't forget this!" he said.

After that, the stars were almost an anticlimax. Almost.

Ray Winstone arrived first. In reality, Winstone is 50 and, if in decent shape (he's a former boxer), he's not Mr. Olympia. But in the movie, he's a 20-something animated hero with six-pack abs. He told CNN that his wife said that's what he looked like 30 years ago, but he thinks she's just being kind.

And you might be interested in one of Winstone's next films: "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull." He said Harrison Ford still has it, and when Ford cracks that whip for the first time, you'll get a chill down your spine.

Then it was on to Crispin Glover, who voices the monster Grendel in the movie. Glover, as you recall, is known for playing George McFly in "Back to the Future" ... and for being rather, uh, eccentric. He arrived with a jacked-up Tiny Tim hairdo, starlet on his arm, and chatted away as we heard all this commotion in the background. The reason for the noise? Brad Pitt and "Beowulf" star Angelina Jolie, of course. They'd arrived, and the media trembled.

After short interviews with Anthony Hopkins and John Malkovich -- the latter acknowledging my greeting with "Hello, Doug from CNN" in that breathless creepy assassin voice from "In the Line of Fire" -- we met Jolie. She couldn't have been nicer. She took one look at my Steve McQueen jacket and exclaimed, "Nice jacket!" Which of course, totally made my week. When one of the world's most beautiful women digs your wardrobe, you must be doing something right.

Look out, ladies: I am now officially Angelina Jolie-approved!

All just another day at the office, of course.

-- Douglas Hyde
Mr. Douglas Hyde, I respectfully urge you to "get a life" as they say. Why do I need to know about your stupid jacket being liked by actress Jolie? No one but you and your Mother care about that. Tell me something else about your visit to the red carpet event. Save the gushing for your family! Thanks for reading. D.
It's nice to read a pleasant experience on the red carpet ride to a premier...It's also nice to hear that a journalist can have a crush and be star struck as well. This sounded like a little of the old time Hollywood that I've read about and it was nice to read.

Thank you for sharing and giving me a pleasanr visual.
No info about the Hopkins or Malkovich interviews, but will bore us with his minutia on his jacket. Tried to make this article about himself, how sad. I think CNN needs some upgrades in the reporter department.
I usually despise the gossipy red-carpet antics of the Entertainment section, but I was intrigued because of the movie. By the end of Mr. Hyde's description of John Malkovich, I was thoroughly enjoying the read. And I loved the bit about the jacket...ignore that first comment. Thanks for making an entertainment piece truly entertaining and not just aimless hype.
This is pleasant article. It's nice to hear an entertaining personl experience from Hollywood, instead of the usual exposes that litter the media. I wouldn't say that Mr. Hyde was "gushing", but more "star struck", which is the sort of experience an average Joe like me would expect to have, if I had been standing to the side of the red carpet and a star commented positively on my jacket. Yes, it is a bit of the "old-time Hollywood" that I have heard of and that I would like to enjoy one day. Thanks, Mr. Hyde, for making my day a little more enjoyable.
Pay no attention to that anonymous cretin who said you should get a life. Obviously he/she missed the point of your blog entry. I think it was cool and as a reporter myself I love those little moments that aren't earth-shattering and have nothing to do with nonsense like "is she pregnant?" and all that. Of course now the question is, is Beowulf the film any good? I'll be first in line when it plays here.
Did Jolie make him "week" or weak. Odd to find a typo on cnn.com
Mr. Hyde, the ending of your article was very sweet. The entire article's tone was refreshing and easy to follow. I enjoyed the read.
CNN,

What happened to journalism? I read the title, wondering what this article might be about and was shocked to read something in the first person.

Can you tell your writers to go back to college and suggest a journalism course.

Better yet, CNN, please just up the quality of content before I switch to another Newsfeed.

Thanks and have a great day!
Just ignore Anonymous D, Doug. He's just jealous that nobody likes his jacket.

By including Jolie's "nice jacket" comment, it helped communicate that she's not a star that's so above noticing things about other people. Nice touch of humanity there.

Loved the running commentary on the stars, especially Glover. He is SO bizarre.
WTF is a Steve McQueen Jacket?
That is because there is no typo. It clearly states "made my week." Read.

Thanks for the article. Nice to see something easy and simple. Good to hear Jolie still can eye the simple things in life.
Wow. I have never read such a poorly-written article that size which managed to convey so little. It pretty much amounted to "I saw celebrities! YAY!"
Super Clown!
To all the tards posting negative criticism.
Shut up and go back to reading trash like gawker stalker.
I swear it's called a Blog for a reason.
Go look up the definition on dictionary.com for blog.

Personally I enjoyed reading this blog entry. It's refreshing to see the stars just being people. There's nothing special about stars they are just like every other human they are people.

What you should be doing is thanking all the hard working people in front of and behind the scenes that make those 2 hour popcorn films that bring you entertainment.

After all they have to put up with all the tards that subscribe to trash like gawker stalker.

Thanks for taking the time to blog about your experience at the opening.
I found this completely entertaining...and the comment about the jacket is what makes it a BLOG! Very personal touch. Thanks.
Sounds kool Doug that she liked ur jacket, I can't wait to see the movie. Keep up the good work.
I've been looking forward to "Beowulf" so thank you for a little glimpse of the red carpet. Though I've only seen trailers it appears to me that Ray Winstone still looks too old for "Beowulf." As one of my favorite legends I suppose I have a specific image. However, Mr. Winstone is a terrific actor so I will refrain from total judgement until I see the film. Some people thought Mr. Hyde's thoughts were shallow or too much about himself. However, he is writing a blog, the purpose of which is to talk about one's own experiences, not necessarily writing in a reporter's point of view.
Crappy lead, stupid self-gratifying end. No important information. Even if the premiere wasn't interesting, we still don't want to know about the press people complaining, i'm sure they do that every day.
I enjoyed your blog. It is nice to see someone famous and rich acting like a normal person. I love Angelina anyway, but it isn't often reporters have nice things to say about actors.

What makes me sad are the comments. What happened to "if you don't have anything nice to say"? And if you don't understand the purpose of a blog, perhaps you should invest in a dictionary. Spend less time looking for mistakes and more time paying attention to what you read. And if you were looking for "news" or "serious journalism" why in God's name would you read a blog about a movie?

Is rude the new black?
It just goes to show what a thoughtful person Angelina is, to take the focus away from herself and say something kind to you. We need more people in this World like her. All of those bloggers who have left negative comments need to get a life!
I found the blog entry interesting, though I didn't realize it was a blog until reading all the comments. Perhaps to avoid confusion and to "weed out" the non-blog readers, the entry should more clearly noted that it is a blog.
What is wrong with some of you people? This was a great piece which conveyed wonderful small moments between a reporter and actors. Why people find it fun to be negative I'll never understand. Anyway,I saw Beowulf in IMAX 3D and the thing blew my mind. Great, great movie.

P.S.
Doug, as a long time Brad Pitt fan I can tell you he's a huge fan of Steve McQueen but that probably has absolutely nothing to do with why Ms. Jolie complimented you on your jacket. lol
Great blog! Wish I were there to witness the "spooky papier-mache edifice" and dry-ice. Sounds much more interesting than bickering media hounds, eh? Reading your piece was a nice emotional lift up. Love the description of Crispin Glover. Thank you!
It clearly says "Marquee entertainment blog" on the link. Very refreshing and enjoyable perspective.

To jcl, Winstone lends his wonderful voice and little bit of his face to the motion-capture film (it is not live) and he is certainly not old in it!
Loosen up anonymous! You need to get a sense of humor. I think your jacket is cute too, so there!
Star struck? Do you think the guy stocking the freezer section with ice cream really gets star struck over his product? OR the gas station attendant pumping your gas? Stars are products and people like this reporter have a job of pumping them up for the 'common man'. What a sad job that is.
You all speak as if Ms. Jolie has an IQ, and I can guarantee this is not the case. She is a body and only a body, as is Pitt....good grief - we all tend to assign cognizance to complete bufoonery....
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