JamesGunn.com – Official Website for James Gunn

youtube facebook twitter myspace blip.fm
 
 

Our Motherfucking LONDON Trip! With Lovely PHOTOS!!



FRIDAY, DECEMBER 8

We arrive in London, England.  I’m tired as hell because I didn’t sleep at all on the ten hour flight over.  Instead, Jenna and I watched the first four hours of the fifth season of 24, which just came out on DVD.  That guy who plays President Logan is fucking hilarious!  He’s seriously my new favorite character on TV.  What a pussy.

Anyway, we get to the Soho hotel in — you’ll never guess — Soho.  It’s about two P.M. in the afternoon in London, but it’s ten P.M. in Cali.  I haven’t slept since the day before.  Jenna and I promise each other we won’t go to sleep until night, so as to get on a proper schedule.  I tell her we must be strong.  Meanwhile, Jenna goes to the bathroom.

I lie down on the bed.  I won’t go to sleep, I tell myself.  I’ll just lie here for second.  With my eyes closed.

I wake up three hours later.  I think that Jenna is going to be pissed until I see she’s asleep in the bed beside me.

We need to figure out what to do to stay awake until night.  We try to watch our DVD, but our hotel room only has a region 2 DVD player.  Fuck!  I’m pissed.  First God kills all those poor people in Darfur and now no Jack Bauer for six days.

Jenna and I eat at a restaurant called Little Italy in Soho.  The food is good, but the Goddamn smoke kills us both.  I forgot about England and you smokers.  Jenna and I crack each other up by doing demeaning imitations of the disgusting woman next to us, who takes a bite of food, followed by a puff off her cigarette.  Oh, also, the restaurant is very crowded and they have our table right next to the waiter’s station, and the waiters keep bending down to grab stuff, sticking their asses right into Jenna’s face.  Jenna claims she can smell butt, but I think she’s exaggerating.  How could she smell butt through this thick screen of smoke?

Afterwards, Jenna and I do what anyone needs to do when travelling to the majestic city of London: we track down a Border’s bookstore so we can buy Season five of 24 on Region 2 DVD.

That night we watch Jack Bauer kill folks amidst absolutely ludicrous but somehow marvelous plot holes.  However, the British version of 24 has a couple differences:

1) They don’t process their digital video through Filmlook (or whatever 24 uses), so, instead of having a mock-35 mm appearance, it has the video look of a soap opera.  This is difficult to get used to, and gives the cuts and pans a choppy quality I don’t like.

2) For some fucking reason, the UK version has a different score.  The music by Sean Callery in the US version is fantastic.  But here the music sounds like some circa-1982 Tangerine Dream wannabe’s who borrowed the Human League’s drum machine.  It’s fucking atrocious.

Fuck you, British version of 24, Jenna and I say, as we fall peacefully to sleep a little after midnight.  I’m very happy as I fall asleep so early — I didn’t think I’d be able to do it!

SATURDAY, DECEMBER 9

I wake up three hours later.  It’s a little after 3 a.m. and I can’t fall back to sleep.  My body reacted as if I was taking a long afternoon nap.  I don’t want to waste time lying fruitlessly in bed, so I get up and go into the other room and write.  I’m inspired, and I’m actually work out some plot troubles I’ve been having in the last act of my new script.   At about 7, I try to go back to sleep, but no go.

Jenna and I wake up to get ready for the wedding.  Oh yeah, I forgot to tell you.  That’s the reason we went to London.  Some friends of ours, Lucy Davis and Owain Yeoman, are getting married.  You may know Lucy from her role in the original OFFICE, or Owain from his fantastic work on THE NINE.  But we just known them as a couple of very fine, very funny folks.

They’re actually getting married in the basement tombs of St. Paul’s cathedral.  That’s right: they get to walk over Florence Nightingale’s decaying bones on the way to the altar.  Normal people aren’t allowed to get married in St. Paul’s, but Lucy’s dad has an M.B.E., which, as I understand it, is like being a knight jr.  (I think a person needs to do huger piles of cocaine, like Mick Jagger or Elton John, to be an actual knight.)

Lucy’s dad is supposedly a big deal over here.  His name is Jasper Carrott.

"Who’s Jasper Carrott?" I ask a British person.

"Oh, he’s a big deal over here," the British person says.  "He’s like Bill Cosby."

"Like Bill Cosby how?  He drugs and rapes women?"

"No, no.  He’s a legendary television comedian."

I had this same conversation about forty-seven times (and, yes, I made the same rape joke forty seven times, as I find rape jokes work well internationally).  I was despondent when I discovered Jasper didn’t spell his last name like an actual carrot.

Anyway, the wedding is fucking amazing.  We ride a double decker bus directly from our hotel to the doors of the church.

The paparazzi was a bit of a pain going in and out (the British press often is — I remember riding on a plane with Sarah Michelle Gellar to the SCOOBY DOO 2 premiere in England — the photographers were actually waiting for us as soon as we got off the plane, which means they must have bought tickets just to get through security).  However, today, no one recognized Jenna, as I don’t think our OFFICE is so big over there.  

The reception, too, is fun as hell.  As far as I’m concerned, England’s two greatest exports of the past few years are the original OFFICE and SHAUN OF THE DEAD.  Because Lucy was in both, that’s who was at our table.  I got along especially well with Edgar Wright, the director of SHAUN.  We had an hour long talk about everything from Sergio Corbucci to Frank Henenlotter to the old British TV show THE GOODIES, which I loved as a kid.

That night, we were on a high from the fun of the day.  My adrenalin had kept me awake, but by the time we got back to the hotel I was dead tired.  I think we were only able to get through one episode of 24 before falling asleep a little after midnight.

SUNDAY, DECEMBER 10

We woke up past one in the afternoon.  We went downstairs and joined the wedding party for lunch.  We chatted with Laurence and Bianca, a nice couple we met the day before, and tried to get Owain to give up some gossip on his THE NINE castmates.  He won’t tell us much, but I find out Tim Daly is 56 years old, which isn’t really gossip, but it freaks me the fuck out as he’s the youngest looking 56 year old I’ve ever seen.

Elizabeth Banks and Max Handelman come by to meet us.  Elizabeth has been in town shooting FRED CLAUSE, where she plays a tall, sexy elf.

Even though I’m afraid of heights, Elizabeth and my over-eager wife somehow rope me into going on the London Eye — it’s that enormous ferris wheel monstrosity.

As we ascend in the huge pods, I sit down and make my three friends form a human wall so that I can’t see out the windows.  Eventually, though, I get used to it, and it’s not so bad.

We have a great dinner with Elizabeth and Max, and head back to the hotel to watch 24 until almost four o clock in the morning.  There are a lot of surprises in this particular season (but I ask you not to share them on this blog — in part because we’re not done with it yet, and also for the sake of others who don’t yet have it.)

MONDAY, DECEMBER 11

Jenna and I both wake up before 6 in the morning and decide to just go ahead and start our day.  Since we’ve only done things I like to do on this vacation — like socialize and eat and watch 24 — I owe Jenna a day of vacation slavery, which means going to a fucking castle.

I have traveled a lot in my life.  If I never see another fucking castle, palace, or cathedral as long as I live I’ll be happy.  After a while they’re all the same.  But today Jenna has talked me into tavelling with her to Windsor Castle.

We take the train, which is rather interesting.  Jenna was scared, because she didn’t know if we were going to end up on the right one.

Windsor Castle is fucking rainy and boring.  There are some statues and gold stuff and shit.

In the town of Windsor, we stopped in this gift shop with a Paddington Bear display.  The cashier wondered why we were taking this fucking picture.

The ride home from Windsor was a fucking nightmare.

We go back to the hotel, get a couple hours sleep, and then it’s off to see Tim Curry in SPAMALOT.  At the beginning of the show, a Diet Coke bottle in my pocket explodes, which means I have to sit in Coke spooge throughout the show.  Even with this, it was a great night.  Despite my horror pedigree, I love musical theater — and SPAMALOT was the best show Jenna and I have seen in a long time.

Guess what we do afterwards?  Yes, we have intercourse.  But that isn’t what I was talking about.  I was talking about we watched 24.  Hooray!

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 12

Today, we go to the Victoria and Albert Museum.  We took the subway, which had kickass new wave seats.

Usually, I like museums about as much as castles, but this particular one is pretty fucking hot.

Call me a girlie-man, but I’m really into the fashion display.  It’s cool to see the weird shit people have worn throughout the years.

In particular, I’m turned on by this man-dress.  Yes, this thing is for dudes.

I’m excited by the lives my male ancestors lived, where their scrotes could swing freely, instead of being bound up in the tyranny of what the matriarchy likes to call "pants."  I give Jenna the cold shoulder for a good fifteen minutes for oppressing me.

We also see this plaster cast of David.

When Jenna and I went to Italy a few years ago, the David was closed.  Even this plaster cast is stunning, which makes us a little sad we missed it.

That night we had a terrific dinner at a place called INCOGNITO.  It was perhaps the best dover sole I ever had.  Afterwards, we met Edgar Wright for drinks and coffee, and to hear more about his new movie, HOT FUZZ, which will be out early ’07, and promises to be to LETHAL WEAPON movies what SHAUN was to zombie flicks.

Jenna and I had a disagreement about what to do next.  I wanted to see CASINO ROYALE.

"Because James Bond is FROM HERE!" I told Jenna.

She wasn’t buying it.  She said we could see CASINO ROYALE back home, at the Arclight, the best movie theater in the world.

Instead we went to see the hip play in town, FROST/NIXON, written by Peter Morgan, who recently wrote the movie THE QUEEN, which I loved.  The play starred Frank Langella (fucking Dracula!) and the guy who played Tony Blair in THE QUEEN.

I wish I could tell you how the play was, but the jet lag finally caught up with me and I spent nearly the whole time in our fourteenth-row-center seats sound the fuck asleep.  I woke up near the end to see Langella rocking the house as Tricky Dick, but that’s about it.

We went back to the hotel to watch 24 and pack, as we had to leave early in the morning.

Bye, England!

© 2006 – 2009, Just Linda. All rights reserved.

Category: BEST OF THE BLOGS

Tagged: , , , , , , , ,



Archives