My Meet and Greet with Rupert Grint
We arrived at the hotel shortly before the Meet and Greet, where we were ushered in a line so we could be let in one by one. Me, Karo and Anna were led into the foyer where we had our names crossed out, handed an itinerary and pointed in the direction of the basement (not as scary as it sounds). We were some of the first people in the room so we quickly sat down in the comfy seats at the front. The press people (old dudes who thought they were funny, but definitely were not!) were trying figure out how Rupert would look best in front of the Cherrybomb poster while eating all the cookies set out for us (humph!).
We waited for about half an hour before things started to happen. My sister, who was waiting outside, suddenly began to text me that the man himself had arrived – unfortunately, I had taken both our cameras with me just in case one turned stupid, so she only got a few photos of him on her crappy phone.
People started to arrive through the door – Connor MacNeill (who plays Fanta in Cherrybomb), Rupert’s PA Sarah and of course Nigel. But nonetheless, we all got a bit of a shock when Rupert walked through the door.
He had to endure about 5 minutes of crazy picture-madness from the press guys – sitting down, standing up, with fans, without fans, looking left, looking right, looking straight forward. Then our host, Tom Deacon, told us about the plans for the next few hours – we were to all have a personal meet and greet with Rupert (only one autograph and one picture for each person), and then a Q&A where our name would be called and we had to ask the question we send in beforehand.
Then, one row at a time, we came towards the front of the room where we each stood in line (behind a HUGE bodyguard), and one by one got to meet him. When it was my turn, I came towards Rupert, held out my hand to shake his and said hello. The first thing I did was give him his birthday present from me – I wanted to give him something very Danish, and I tried to explain to him that the only thing we Danes do good is alcohol. I had bought him three small bottles of an alcoholic drink called “Gammel Dansk” (ie. Old Danish). His response was: “I love that!” He then signed my Blag magazine (“To Malene, Love Rupert”… aaww). Tom Deacon took the picture of us, and then I decided to be brave – I asked if I could get a hug, and as always Rupert was a complete sweetheart and made my entire day, week, month, year and decade by giving me a hug.
I went back to my seat and tried to calm my nerves… after a little while I started to talk to Karo about wanting to get Conor to sign my Cherrybomb DVD – we decided that we might as well do it while waiting for the rest of the Meet and Greet to be over. We walked down to the bar in the back where Conor was hanging out with Sarah, Nigel and another friend of Rupert’s – Conor was very surprised to be asked to sign the DVD, but was happy to do it. Sarah asked if Rupert has signed it as well, but when I told her that he signed my Blag she just said what we all agree on: “He looks sooooooo handsome in that.”
We then went back to our seats to wait for the Q&A – Tom would call a name out and that person could ask their question or get Tom to ask it for them (though no one did that – Rupert made us all relax). This was when I got very nervous… I had my paper with my question so that I wouldn’t forget it, but luckily I didn’t need it when the time came. Everyone got to ask their question, and the atmosphere was very calm and relaxed. Unfortunately the whole thing ended way too quickly (and a whole hour before it actually should) and Rupert had to leave… but we all knew that we would be able to see him very soon at the open Q&A.
We met up with my sister outside of the hotel where she had just arrived back again after having checked out the Apple store while waiting. Her and Andy had made a plan to get us a good spot in the line for the Q&A, but this was made impossible by the crazy zig-zagging we had to do between the masses of people up Regents Street during rush hour. We arrived at the store and a long line had already started to form – oh well, we made ourselves comfortable for the short wait. By complete and sheer luck we were able to get seats together right at the front. The Q&A was to be hosted by Edith Bowman and when her and Rupert were introduced they got a loud cheer from everybody (and the place was packed!!). The Q&A was fun and everybody seemed to really enjoy themselves. This, however, ended too early as well. After an hour of hilarious questions and responses from Rupert, it was all over
The five of us (me, my sister Majbritt, Karo, Anna and Andy) went to a restaurant to discuss EVERYTHING we had experienced. It was a long day and we were very tired and happy.
It is very hard to describe everything that happened that day because it seems so surreal looking back. I’m now left with a feeling of complete and utter amazement – Rupert is exactly like the guy we see in interviews and reports, but at the same time he is just so much more. He made me completely relaxed and extremely nervous at the same time. This was a once-in-a-lifetime-experience for me and I am so grateful that ICM let me be a part of this event.