Thank you to Disney for sponsoring my attendance at the #JungleBookEvent!
My trip to LA for the world premiere of The Jungle Book, directed by Jon Favreau, was absolutely mind blowing. Earlier in the day of the premiere, we interviewed some of the cast and crew before having to get ourselves ready for our exciting walk down the red carpet and preview of The Jungle Book in the famous El Capitan movie theater. It was completely surreal being there. It felt like I was living a double life, or that my job is way cooler than it really is. It didn’t feel like it could possibly be happening to me, that I could possibly be taking pictures in front of the Chinese Theater or watching the world premiere of a movie in the El Capitan theater.
And yet there I was, in my custom tank top that had been inspired by Indian embroidery. There were a few people on red carpet who were from India that commented on how lovely it was as we walked in to the theater, which made me feel a whole lot better about my decision to wear it. We hit a few snags along the way in its creation, but it turned out lovely.
I rounded the look off with high heels and I miraculously didn’t trip and fall on my face during the red carpet walk. Of all the ways to get attention, that’s not the way I wanna go. I figured I’d leave that to one of my friends as I shuffled down the red carpet in my tall heels.
I was expecting to be rushed along and ushered quickly into the theater, but the atmosphere on the carpet was pretty laid back.
We had plenty of time to stroll along, take a few pictures, and make sure we saw all of the attending stars that we wanted to see.
In attendance were: Jon Favreau (director), Neel Sethi (Mowgli), Sir Ben Kingsley (Bagheera), Giancarlo Esposito (Akela), Lupita Nyong’o (Raksha), along with a smattering of other stars who were there to see the movie in all its world premiere glory.
Walking into the theater was like walking into old Hollywood and it felt so glamorous. There were lights and people and snacks and excitement. I enjoyed people watching and marveling at Hollywood kids just hanging out in their element. I realized all my stressing about being under dressed was for naught when a girl walked in with a sundress and denim jacket on.
The movie was shown in 3D and the effects were phenomenal. Watching a movie with the cast sitting in the row behind you was one of the coolest things ever. Knowing that these vocal geniuses could see you appreciate their movie, or that they were seeing it for the first time since production, was something I couldn’t possibly wrap my mind around. I can’t even fathom the pride that goes into such a thing.
We were invited to the after party at Ohm Nightclub and it was like walking into Adventureland at The Magic Kingdom.
There were plants and Dole Whip, Churros, and turkey legs to munch on. Call me crazy, but I couldn’t bring myself to nosh on a giant turkey leg while all these beautiful people were sauntering by. As hungry as I was, and as much as I wanted to eat, I just kind of meandered around in my über tall heels, and sipped on a drink or three. People watching was fun, but for the most part I hung back and watched the crowd and listened to the fabulous big band style live music.
After taking a pic of my friend Melissa with director Jon Favreau, Jon mentioned to me he had been admiring my ink at the press junket earlier in the day. He asked about it and I spilled the beans about its meaning before thanking him for using some of the original score in the new movie. I felt like I was talking to the friend of a friend and not the man who had dreamed up this amazingly gorgeous movie. I’m generally very shy about taking photos with celebrities because stars are people too, but I did it, I took a photo with Jon Favreau, only because I loved his movie and he admired my tattoo. Reasons.
I fully expected there to be more dancing, but I swear I was the only one bee-bopping around fully embarrassing myself during the party, but only when I thought nobody was looking. Everyone else was playing it cool, chillin’, it’s just not my style when something with a beat starts pumpin the speakers. There were photo booths and conversation and tons of fun, and it is a party I’ll never forget. I was disappointed when we had to leave and it made me reflect on what a great time I was having and how fortunate I was to be there. It was difficult to leave and have to face the real world again.
The movie was amazing and I still can’t get over the fact that it was filmed, not on location, but in downtown LA. Neel Sethi did a fabulous job as Mowgli, but I’m insanely glad he showed up to the premiere wearing more than just a red loincloth.
Make sure you go watch the movie on April 15 at your favorite theater in 3D, RealD 3D, and IMAX 3D – it’s an artful masterpiece you really don’t want to miss on the big screen.
For more Jungle Book press trip fun, check out our interview with Lupita Nyong’o and Giancarlo Esposito, our trip to the set of Walk the Prank, and a hilarious “SQUIRREL!” interview with Director Jon Favreau and Neel Sethi who plays Mowgli.