On June 29, 2014 Badass Digest hosted a free advance screening and a live Q-and-A with actors Gary Oldman, Andy Serkis, and director Matt Reeves. And I was one of the lucky few to attend the event in person.
To say the film was an intense and thrilling experience is an understatement (stay tuned later this week for my review), but the q-and-a (which was livestreamed, we've embedded the broadcast on YouTube) made the event on par with a Hollywood premiere event, marking one of the most high profile events the Drafthouse has staged in quite some time.
The event was under tight security; all cell phones had to be checked in at the front, or left in cars to avoid any media leaks (the event filled up within minutes upon announcement online).
Badass Digest editor and critic Devin Faraci conducted the interview session, and allowed question from both the audience and followers on Twitter. Oldman, recently in hot water over a controversial interview with 'Playboy' magazine, kept the focus squarely on the movie, noting that he tried to make sure his character Dreyfus, was more than just a cartoon villain; and Serkis dished about the method to his motion capture performance.
Director Matt Reeves was self-deprecating, and candid on his filmmaking choices, talking extensively on the process for creating the apes language, and how his film's both compliment and go in different directions from the earlier film's in the franchise.
Attendees were each given posters, all of which were autographed by Oldman, Serkis, and Reeves (five lucky followers on Twitter scored posters as well). They were congenial and seemed engaged and thankful for the positive reception.
It was a thrilling, fun-filled day at the Drafthouse, and made this writer's 43rd birthday much easier to bear. Attendees all left with smiles on their faces.
'Dawn of the Planet of the Apes' will hit theaters nationwide July 11, 2014. In addition to my review, I'll be ranking the series from best to worst in anticipation of its release.