Register  |   Log In  |  
Sign up to our weekly newsletter    
Search   
Empire Magazine and iPad
Follow Me on Pinterest YouTube Tumblr
Empire
Trending On Empire
100 Greatest Videos Games Of All Time
Robin Williams: The Big Interview
Empire Visits The Hobbit's VFX Team
Nick Frost:
My Movie Life

The World's End star's pick of the flicks
4Music's Size Does Matter
Introducing your new favourite app
Movie News

LATEST HEADLINES
YESTERDAY
New Trailer for Seventh Son
Jeff Bridges gets his Gandalf on
Second Shaun The Sheep Teaser Is Here
He's off to pastures new...
More Movie News

RELATED NEWS
12 August 2014
The Trailer For Johnny Depp's Mortdecai Romps In
Set moustaches to curled
More Movie News

RELATED FUTURE FILMS
American Pastoral
31 December 2015
The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
27 February 2015
Pride
12 September 2014
More Future Films

RELATED REVIEWS
Endless Love (2014)
Empire Star Rating
I, Frankenstein (2014)
Empire Star Rating
August: Osage County (2014)
Empire Star Rating
About Time (2013)
Empire Star Rating
Jack The Giant Slayer (2013)
Empire Star Rating
More new cinemas releases
DVD & Blu-ray releases

Rider On The Storm
Stormbreaker world premiere hits London

18 July 2006  |  Written by   

submit to reddit

The Vue Leicester Square is lined by girls…and they’re screaming. Such is the excitement surrounding new young actor Alex Pettyfer and Stormbreaker, the novel adaptation following the adventures of teen spy Alex Rider, that it’s as if The Beatles have been condensed into a 16-year-old kid with a grade three haircut.

Inside the foyer however, the adulation in the cinema is reserved for author Anthony Horowitz. The boys clutching copies of the books probably couldn’t care less about the bloke kissing fans outside; for them, the pen truly is mightier than a semi-automatic.

“It’s nice that people haven’t forgotten that there was once a book and a writer and that’s how it all began,” laughs Horowitz wryly. “I’m used to being in a room writing on my own, so to be at a premiere surrounded by people and the media interest, I feel a bit like a fish out of water.” He shouldn't be: Miramax head honcho Harvey Weinstein has turned up with his family this evening so something's obviously gone right.


Finding the right boy out of 500 to bring his spy to life was an epic task, until director Geoffrey Sax came across Pettyfer: “He ticked all the boxes,” he says. “He looked great, he could act the part and he was very at ease with all the action sequences. We kept coming back to him, he kept on buzzing round our heads so eventually we just said ‘Let’s do it.’”

With six books already published and a huge waiting fanbase, stardom looks set for Pettyfer. “We kept saying to him, ‘Look, your life is going to change after the film opens’, but I don’t think anything can prepare you for what this is going to be like.” Mind you, the shrieking harpies outside the cinema could probably give him a nudge in the right direction
.

Giving his suit an airing for the second week in a row after the Pirates 2 premiere, Bill Nighy is relishing playing another morally dubious part. “I have no feelings, I’m heartless and I’m the head of MI6,” he says of his character, Alan Blunt. “I don’t really consider it a problem whether he (Alex Rider) comes back in one piece, or several, or at all.” As with everyone here tonight, he’s full of praise for the young star: “Alex Pettyfer has done a wonderful job. I could never have done what he’s done at that age, I’d have run screaming.” That we’d pay to see.

Having already played one famous Horowitz in Clueless,  Alicia Silverstone relished the chance to get stuck into the English version’s story, as Alex’s guardian. No Brit japery onset for her though: it seems she's immune. “I have English parents so I’m quirked out,” she giggles. “But me, Bill and Sophie (Okonedo) had so much fun it was ridiculous. It’s not really a job, it’s more a vacation in the sun.”

The cheers outside have momentarily shifted to “Ewan! Ewan!” and Mr MacGregor himself soon waltzes in. As Ryder’s uncle in the film, did he – forgive us – play Yoda to the young star? “I sat him down as soon as he arrived on set and said ‘Now, listen here!’” he chuckles. “No, he’s got a very wise head on his shoulders has Alex, he didn’t need any advice from me.”

Having bounded around signing autographs, a newly-shorn Alex Pettyfer finally rushes in. “You get so much energy from the crowd and aargh! You really want to give it all!” he explains, beaming. Although, it seems even kissing fans can’t beat working with Ewan McGregor. “He’s fantastic, he’s an icon. Look at him, he gives such great performances even if he’s five minutes in a film.”

At 10 minutes in this one, McGregor gets to do just that, and is visibly enthused at starring in a UK action film. “I’m having the time of my life, it’s fantastic,” he says. “In Britain we’re not well-known for our action flicks, but there’s incredibly talented technicians, stunt crew, writers, directors and producers here so there’s no reason we shouldn’t be.”

IRA Zombies, your time has come.



Have Your Say
To comment on this, and all articles, register for free or login now.

World Exclusive: The New Wall-E Trailer
This kicks shiny metal butt!
Roger Michell Directing Bond 22
Considering the next spy pic

SPECIAL FEATURE
The 301 Greatest Movies Of All Time EMPIRE READERS' POLL: THE 301 GREATEST MOVIES OF ALL TIME
You turned out in your hundreds and thousands, and here are the results... Browse the full list


CURRENT HIGHLIGHTS
The Many Deaths Of Sean Bean
The actor talks us through his on-screen offings

Rogues Gallery: Powers Boothe
Sin City's Roark talks us through his most memorable baddies

Richard Attenborough: In Celebration
Saluting a man who made a lasting impact on cinema and beyond…

Exclusive: Luc Besson Talks Lucy
'There is no bullshit with Scarlett Johansson'

Video: Daniel Radcliffe Talks What If...
On Gordon Ramsay, swearing and date movies

The 24 Best Film-Related Ice Bucket Challenges
The viral craze that won’t quit takes in some of Hollywood’s finest

Who Shot First? The Complete List Of Star Wars Changes
An exhaustive chronology of George Lucas' post-release tinkering

Subscribe to Empire magazine
Get 6 Issues Of Empire For Only £15!

Get exclusive subscriber-only covers each month!

Subscribe today

Subscribe to Empire iPad edition
Get The Empire iPad Edition Today

Subscribe and save maney on annual digital subscription

Subscribe today
Buy single issues

Get 6 issues of Empire for just £15!
Get the world's greatest movie magazine delivered straight to your door! Subscribe today!
Empire's Film Studies 101 Series
Everything you ever wanted to know about filmmaking but were afraid to ask...
The Empire iPad Edition
With exclusive extras, interactive features, trailers and much more! Download now
Home  |  News  |  Blogs  |  Reviews  |  Future Films  |  Features  |  Interviews  |  Images  |  Competitions  |  Forum  |  iPad  |  Podcast  |  Magazine Contact Us  |  Empire FAQ  |  Subscribe To Empire  |  Register
© Bauer Consumer Media Ltd  |  Legal Info  |  Privacy Policy  |  Bauer Entertainment Network
Bauer Consumer Media Ltd (company number 01176085 and registered address 1 Lincoln Court, Lincoln Road, Peterborough, England PE1 2RF)