Fan Report from Greece Premiere of Half-Blood Prince with Tom Felton and Evanna LynchHBP Film
As a follow to the earlier report last week of the premiere of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince in Greece featuring a guest appearance from Tom Felton (Draco) and Evanna Lynch (Luna), we now have a first hand report from the scene. TLC reader Mr. Brightside was at the event in Greece, and sent us these photos (more here) as well as the report below. You can also see additional photos and videos of Tom and Evanna at this event here, here, and here courtesy of Feltbeats.com. Enjoy! Thanks so much Mr. Brightside!
"So, the event was supposed to start at 6 a.m. I arrived with my friends at around 4:30 and the place was already filled with fans. Around nearly one hundred people were gathered around the area were the event took place. There were props from the movie, two bookcases with books, a desk and chairs were Tom and Evanna would sit as wel as a Hedwig replica along with a bird cage. There was also Harry Potter decoration around the cinema with big posters and character cut outs. All the stuff at the cinema was wearing black t-shirts with a silver Half blood prince logo on them.
Surprisingly many people came at the event dressed up in wizard costumes (it is quite unusual in Greece so i was very excited to see more fans) which looked exactly the same from the movies, carrying wands and wearing hats or wearing HP merchandise such as Slytherin ties and t-shirts. Actually there were many people wearing Voldemort and Slytherin merchandise. Of particular mention though is a little blond boy who drew all the attention on him as he was dressed up in black clothes wearing a black scarf and round potterish glasses having the scar on his head. He looked like a combination of Malfoy and Harry. Unfortunately i couldn't get any pictures of him.
While we were waiting, several press photographers and cameramen from Greek channels appeared and the crowd was getting bigger and bigger. According to reports more than 3.000 people filled the mall. As the time was getting closer and closer we all turned towards the entrance from were the two actors would come. Around at six o'clock people started screaming and shouting and we all though that they were finally there but it was one of the many false alarms that followed. The time was passing and we were getting tired due to the heat, standing almost still and the pushing among the crowd. It was 6:30 when many people started cursing and leaving frustrated at the actors who were late (although many of them had no idea who would appear as they seemed to think that the trio would be there so as soon as they found out that "Malfoy" was there they were leaving disappointed). We had to wait twenty more seconds when at 6:55 the actors finally came and we all went crazy.
Unfortunately we had to wait for ten to fifteen minutes till the meet and greet session begun as Tom and evanna had to give interview to several channels. More angry people left the event but the true fans waited patient including myself :P
When they were done, the autograph event begun. We had to queue and wait our turn as Evanna and Tom were signing autographs. There was a professional photographer that was taking a picture for each fan with Felton and Evanna that as we assumed they would give each of the them after the event. It was quite quick actually since fans couldn't stay more than a few minutes with them. The process was much like, greet them, probably say a few words, take a picture and go. A few people tried to have their books signed but most of them were unlucky since the organizers would not let them. A young woman tried to unfold her enormous Marauders map (where did she found it?) for Tom and Evanna to sign it but she was kinda kicked out immediately. It seemed as they were trying to sign as many cards as possible. Funny moment: a young woman tried to kiss Tom on the cheek, when he turned towards her and they almost kissed. Tom surprised turned his face the last moment.
But the crowd was quite wild and everything was a mess. Some people were constantly pushing those in front of them to move forward while the security guards kept pushing everyone back. So the two lines that were formed couldn't make any progress and we were stuck at the same place for ten to fifteen minutes. According to the host that was there, Evanna and Tom were frightened by the crowd and if the pushing wouldn't stop the actors would leave. After only thirty to forty minutes and a lot of pushing, screaming and yelling both Tom and Evanna got up and left without even thanking the crowd for being there or saying goodbye. The host though informed us they had a surprise for us.
Needless to say that the crowd went nuts and booed them for leaving (they were supposed to stay for another hour and boy, they had more than enough cards to sign), while several other people started cursing them and doing some not very nice Greek gestures towards them. On my behalf i was rather dissapointed and frustrated as well as my company, since we were tired waiting for them so long and we really wanted to meet them. Especially if we consider that most of those who attended the event (including me) came from distant locations of Athens.
In an attempt to calm the fans, the security guards distributed the remaining unsigned cards to the crowd. When that was done, since we had nothing to do we did what everyone else was doing. I have never seen people queuing to take pictures with character cut outs. It was crazy but very funny. Everyone was running around like kids taking pictures with Hermione, Ron, and the rest of the cut outs. Funny enough there was not Snape cut out or poster.
Finally when, the loudspeaker voice informed us that the screening room was ready, everyone started clapping and screaming. In the screening room there were cameras set up. After a few minutes, Felton and Evanna entered the room while everyone in, was clapping and screaming out of excitement (we though that they would watch the movie with us). They gave a small interview, which was rather funny and akward for the audience because of the interviewer's mistakes (he called Luna "Roula' which is a Greek name and we were all laughing and then he asked the audience if we think that Tom's blond hair is real or not. Of course we all screamed no, but he though we were saying yes, because the Greek word for yes sounds like the English no, and then we screamed even louder but i guess he was deaf). After a few questions, both Evanna and Tom thanked us (Tom in Greek) and left the theater.
To sum up, although like many others i did not get an autograph and met them, it was a very nice experience and both of them as everyone stated, were very nice and friendly with everyone and hopefully we'll see them again, it was amazing to have them here. On the movie part, everyone seemed to love the film and every time Rupert appeared on the screen everyone was laughing hysterically."