I have had a few requests to report on our experience of the Sydney Fan Event Red Carpet. Well what can I say. In typical Aussie fashion we had the “fan event you are having when you are not having a fan event”. I was initially told 40-50 lucky “fans” would get the opportunity to attend an exclusive Q&A Fan Event with Rob. I understand from articles ie. Angela Bishop, that somehow that expanded to 120. So we decided that we would try our luck at the red carpet of which little information was provided. I was told not to head down until 4.00 pm on the day because there was no way people would be allowed to line up as the “infrastructure” would not be in place. But when have I ever listened to anyone.
So on Monday I ventured down to Fox Studios in the rain to meet up with Michelle, Vertigo and Vicky. I wish I could say I was surprised to see people already there, a few girls I understand from AussieTwilighters (please correct me if I’m wrong) had camped out since 7.30 am on Sunday. When we arrived at 11.30 am there were probably 49 people lined up. That’s a pretty specific number I hear you saying – well security was handing out numbered tickets, in case we were asked to move, and I was handed E50. Needless to say, nothing eventuated from those tickets. Anyway people started to meander down over the next few hours. Carmel & Tess joined us. A few hours later Sue & Kelly also met us in the line. I also met some lovely people (yes Mrs Moxham am talking about you & your lovely friend whose name escapes me). There was no rush of people. We had a really good spot front row on the barriers, where according to one of the security – he told us to sit tight that we were in a good spot. I may or may not have said to him “you better not be lying or I will hunt you down”. I’ve seen a few comments that my estimation is wrong. I wish I could say it was but I’m pretty sure if I’m out it’s only by about 50. So let’s just say somewhere between 200-300 people were lined up for argument’s sake. It was pretty much only 1 person deep. This is no slight on Rob as some are suggesting. There was no information forthcoming for this event, no advertising and bad weather. Flights in Australia are not cheap. The cheapest flight Lise-Lou could find from Perth to Sydney was $900. If people had known what was going down and that Rob really was going to come out and just about stop and take pics and sign for almost everyone, then I’m pretty sure more people would have been there. As the sun peeked through I think at around 1.00 pm Ben Hazlewood came out for a sound check, sang 2 songs – one of which was his new release & told us we were the first to hear it and he would be back. As he walked by us Vertigo yelled “you’re the boss” to which he stopped, pointed to her and said “I’m coming back for YOU”. Thanks to the weather Gods that didn’t happen, but that interaction was GOLD. Anyway – long story short, we endured every season in the hours whilst we waited – sun, cyclonic winds, rain, sun. There was no “fun things” to keep us entertained. Alright I lie – maybe I kept them entertained with my running commentary on all things WRONG with this event. Vertigo only had to rein me in once. Nova what happened to the ponchos you claimed you were coming back to give us? Oh yeah that’s right you gave them to your own employees. Also, so people know, the media that was on the red carpet prior to Rob’s arrival pretty much only spoke to fans under the age of 25. Surprised? Nova didn’t even venture near us. The only person who asked us if we wanted to say anything was Rochelle Fox from The Dirt (I’ll ignore the fact she called him Robert Patterson). We declined – I mean I really didn’t want to scream out “We Love You Rob”. Tre embarrassing.
So for the next few hours we entertained ourselves by chatting with the people still setting up the red carpet. In fact, it was 4.45 pm and they were still tying up lose ends, picking up all the leaves which were blowing in all the time – I told them – just leave them and pretend it’s the Forks forest. Not sure if they appreciated my sarcasm. Oh and I might have asked one of the girls attaching the cloth to the barricades if I could use her pigstabber type tool in case I had some over zealous fan behind me. Rob was supposed to turn up at 5.00pm, but when has Rob ever been on time. Of course had he been the sun was shining. Security told us he had arrived, actually security told us that a lot over the next 40 or so minutes. At 5.30 pm the clouds moved in. At 5.40 pm the heavens opened – cyclonic winds, windchill factor minus zero (ok that might be a slight exaggeration, but it was freakin cold), absolutely torrential rain and you guessed it “hail”. I’m not exaggerating about the weather – it was horrendous. The organisers were nowhere to be seen. We feared that perhaps we wouldn’t get Rob on the carpet at all. I remember saying to the girls – oh yeah you wait we are sooooo meeting Rob with the way we look – Murphy’s Law you can bet on it. Anyway with quite a few false alarms with people being asked to scream “Rob” all the time, we kind of didn’t believe that Rob had already ventured onto the carpet in the rain when we heard more screams, but he had! The man is a trooper. I don’t care what anyone says – I saw it with my own eyes. The weather was shocking and he was out there signing and taking pics with fans.
Thankfully by the time Rob was meandering his way to us the sun was out again. Or at least the rain had stopped. Here he is just a little further away from us. And I’m loving the security guy behind him – Dean was to Rob’s right (or left of my pic) and is just out of shot.
I forgot to mention, they were handing out massive BD Pt 2 Purple Edward posterboards – I swear it was like a mini billboard (it’s about 900 x 600 and has a rubberish backing) and don’t ask me why but I put my hand up to get one and get one I did.
I placed it in front of the barricade. Nothing like product placement LOL) before the rain & wind hit – I moved it to my side of the hoarding when that happened. So when Rob was talking to the person next to me I realised I hadn’t put it in front for him to sign. In typical me fashion I kind of tried to do it whilst Rob was there – I think I almost took him out. I couldn’t believe as I moved it down there he was right in front of me. I’m pretty sure I said “Oh shit I almost took you out Jesus nobody would be happy about that” – which is why I think I got this look:
Here’s the section of poster Rob signed for me
Okay I can’t really remember if that’s why Rob gave me that look. But I AM on the receiving end of that look – it’s when we were chatting. I’ve just cropped myself out of the pic so you can’t see the smile I have on my face – it’s my favourite pic of Rob and me and I have Carmel to thank for that. Thank you Carmel for capturing this moment I will be forever grateful (I also love the pic Vertigo took of me and Rob where she unknowingly captured “tongue” – Rob’s not mine – that will be a LNP because it’s kind of fitting isn’t it that Rob and I are in a picture together with that.)
Anyway Rob and I had a quick chat. I told him we were his Aussie fansite and he said and I quote in his softly spoken voice “Oh yeah, they’re great”. Bwahaha I’m sure Rob was just being polite, but you know what – I heard it, Vertigo heard it, Michelle heard it – it freakin happened. I think we need to put that on a banner. What a gentleman. Honestly, I don’t know what I expected from Rob. I’m not sure I ever expected that we would converse, but I know I wasn’t prepared for how gentle and softly spoken he is. He is a gentle soul. There’s none of that bravado in interviews. He was really sweet and I got the vibe that he was pretty nervous. I’ve heard people say he seems confident in the photos on the carpet, but I truly believe Rob when he says he gets nervous and the screaming crowds freak him out. I mean you think about it – he’s paraded down a red carpet – everyone wants a piece of him and it’s just a whirlwind. I had him before me for just a minute or so and I can’t remember half of what was said and done. In fact I had to remind Vertigo that she told me to stop hogging Rob! Rob also looks much younger in person than he does in his pics. He’s gorgeous, but I know you all know that. The fact we saw him with scruff was beyond epic. So Rob moved on towards the end of the line and then we saw him power walked by his minders up the red carpet to the entrance of Byron Kennedy Hall, as he did a quick skip up the steps so he could go into his “exclusive non-fan event” oops sorry did I say that out loud. For the rest of us, we were left speechless, asking whether that really happened and ecstatic that the event was so poorly organised that we got to meet Rob long before we ever expected to. So thank you Hoyt’s Distribution, Nova and whomever else didn’t bother to think about a contingency for wet weather because I’m pretty sure if the event had been done properly we would have been nowhere near Rob and certainly not providing you with any report of what the man himself was like to us in person.
PS. I’ve just posted a few of my pics. I have more, but am not sure whether I will post them. I was fortunate enough to be loaned a fantastic camera with a stalker lens from a friend of mine, so I really have some amazing pics that Jules is working her magic on for an original banner for us. So stay tuned.
I’m happy if anyone wants to repost the pics, but please do not remove my watermark. I actually do own the photos so have every right to watermark them. Cheers.