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The independent London newspaper

BB-8 big draw at Star Wars red carpet premiere

Wizened film critics queued up to have their photo taken with droid

15 December, 2017 — By The Xtra Diary

Critic Jason Solomons ‘trepidatious’ but also fond of BB-8

This week saw Star Wars fever at not just one premiere screening but two.

On Tuesday, the European premiere of the latest instalment of the franchise – The Last Jedi – saw stars sashay down the red carpet at the Royal Albert Hall.

The following night a queue snaked through Leicester Square for a much less advertised hot ticket, the chance to see the first public airing of the movie.

At the advance screening for industry movers, hardened, wizened film critics queued up to have their photo taken with a true star of the film.

No, it wasn’t the incredible Daisy Ridley, the brilliant John Boyega, the legendary Mark Hammill. Nope.

They were queueing up for selfies with BB-8, a droid that rolls about through the film bleeping at its co-stars. Such is the force this extraordinary film franchise has had on contemporary culture that the scrum around the remote- controlled, glorified vacuum cleaner was a sight to behold and its appearance on stage before the credits rolled, along with director Rian Johnson, brought cheers from the audience. As film critic Jason

Solomons told Diary: “You can see from my face that I’m trepidatious, as I’m not a fan of Star Wars stuff. So I approach with caution,” he said “But I am growing fond of this little guy and liked this movie a lot.”

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