The Hollywood premiere of Roland Emmerich’s “Moonfall” was supposed to be for 1,200 people in Westwood. Streets around the Regency theaters were to going to be shut down for an expansive red carpet and after party.
But then omicron came along. Lionsgate scaled back the festivities to a social-distanced screening for 300 at the TCL Chinese Theatre in Hollywood with a limited arrivals carpet for photographers and a poolside party at Emmerich’s nearby home. “When Lionsgate said we could do it at the Chinese, I said, ‘Let’s just have the party at my house,’” Emmerich told me.
Guests, who were required to show proof of vaccination and have a COVID test before the screening in a ballroom at the Hollywood Roosevelt hotel, were shuttled from the theater to Emmerich’s estate, which was referred to on the invitation as “Casa La Brea.”
The guest list included Heidi Klum, Joey King, Karl Glusman and more. There were two bars and a food station offering pigs-in-a-blanket, salad, bread, mini-cupcakes and a selection of cheeses.
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Emmerich is hopeful movie-goers will still turn out to see the disaster film in theaters. “Time will tell,” he said. “I really have no idea.”
Halle Berry and Patrick Wilson star as NASA astronauts who are joined on a trip to space by an amateur scientist and conspiracy theorist (“Games of Thrones” star John Bradley) to try and save the earth from being destroyed by the moon, which has mysteriously gone off its orbit.
“Halle was actually somebody I always wanted to work with, but never had quite the role for her. Then at one point, I said, ‘I am going make this role a woman,’ and I put Halle Berry on the top of the list,” Emmerich said. “We had to rewrite it a little bit but it was easy.”
While Emmerich may be the king of disaster movies, he says COVID has not inspired any ideas for a pandemic-centered film. “I don’t like people being sick,” he said. “It’s a very depressing thing. They did ‘Contagion’ and that was a cool movie but not really one of my favorites.”
“Moonfall” is in theaters Feb. 4.