So my review on the event... I didn't have a lot of photos, since I mostly took videos. I figured I'd screenshot it afterwards. Thank God they allowed photography.
But anyway, the day started early. AND I MEAN REAL EARLY. My siblings and I went off to the airport, where we fetched our cousin Vanessa. Because I had one spare ticket for the premiere and she so desperately wanted to go
We thought about bringing uchiwas and stuff, but forgot them in the rush. All I had was my WakuWaku tote bag, which looked odd with my dress and cardigan. LOL. I decided to dress up since it was a premiere, after all.
Anyway, we arrived at nearly 3pm, two hours before the stipulated time. We got lost, but we found the ticketing counter. After about twenty minutes of running, we finally found the place. IMAGINE OUR SHOCK when we found what looked like five hundred people already there (reports say there was about 2,000 people in there by the time they arrived). We were already positioned in the very back, with probably no hope of seeing them. My sister and cousin noticed the guards erecting barriers near the entrance and stood there, asking the guard if it was okay. He said yes, and we decided to move there. Which meant we were very very close to the entrance of the red carpet, and had a great view of the stars as they arrive.
One hour, two hour passed. My phone battery was dying and I was desperately trying to keep it alive since my confirmation text was in there (which turns out to be unneeded since my name was written on a list). Mezamashi TV arrived to cover the event, and even asked the people around us questions on-air.
Then there they were. Screams erupted and Meikyuu Love Song blared from the speakers. Sho, Keiko, Kippei and Director Hijikata arrived on the red carpet. I laughed at Keiko's shocked face when she saw how many people were waiting for them, how many were waving wildly and singing along to their theme song. Sho looked a bit surprised too, but he regained composure soon and waved at the many fans trying to get their attention.
I had to run, unfortunately. It was about 6.30 and I had to get the tickets from the counter. I missed the whole red carpet talk (even if I did get caught up thanks to the many fancams) but I did avoid the rush of people getting their tickets. We grabbed some snacks from the nearby grocery before getting into the theatre.
We were seated up in the dress circle of the Sands Theatre, and the cast were somewhere else getting interviewed by the local press (or so I've heard). The movie started and the entire theatre was in a hush. I won't spoil it for you, but the theatre was full of laughs and 'ahs' and 'oohs' at all the right places.
At the end of the movie, the director and the cast made an appearance. They did a stage greeting, and a short Q&A. I was really pleased to hear Sho speaking in Singlish. Keiko's english was pretty, too. Kippei kept the crowd laughing. I caught the whole thing on video, actually, and I'm glad I did. My sister and I were seated on the second row and we jumped (literally jumped) to the first to get a better view.
During the Q&A, the emcee asked Sho a question, which he took a long time to answer. I'm not sure whether he was thinking or translating or he simply did catch the question, but people are suddenly murmuring "Gambare, Gambare". My sister, who probably thought the murmurings would escalate to a full-on shout, said "GAMBARE!" a little too loudly. Sho looked up and said "Gambaru?!" My sister got shocked at having been answered, but the people around us laughed. Embarrassing maybe, but hey, she got a reply from Sho!
Sho was truly charismatic, although he did not seem all that comfortable with the foreign crowd. He was very gracious (he earned screams just by helping Keiko up the stage!) and exudes the same charm as he does on TV. He even speaks the same way! It became a bit disconcerting watching him on TV afterwards, knowing that I finally saw him live and heard him speak with my own ears. I felt so strange just watching him on screen and then see him in the flesh afterwards.
After the whole thing was over, Sho, in typical Sho fashion, had to take the microphone back when everyone else thought he was done and said, "Thank you very much! I hope to see you soon! Thank you so much!" as he left the stage.
It was such a surreal experience, I tell you. We were lightheaded and fangirling on the bus home, and I almost could not sleep that night, despite the fact that I had an early shoot the next day.
I recently went to the fans-only screening, maybe I should write on that too? HAHAHA XD