Hollywood stars, royalty at 'Alice in Wonderland' premiere

LONDON- Hollywood stars Johnny Depp and Anne Hathaway joined British royalty on Thursday for the London world premiere of Tim Burton's 3D fantasy adventure movie "Alice in Wonderland".
Braving a torrential downpour, they strode along a sodden green carpet -- replacing the usual red -- as hundreds of screaming fans packed out the British capital's Leicester Square.
Prince Charles, the heir to the British throne, and his wife Camilla also turned out for the premiere in the square which was transformed into a magical wonderland decked out with topiary animals.

Johnny Depp at the premiere of 'Alice in Wonderland' (AFP/Carl Court)
Johnny Depp at the premiere of 'Alice in Wonderland' (AFP/Carl Court)
Hathaway, wearing a sequinned brown dress with a gold jacket and metallic shoes, described her character in the film as "the White Queen with a dark side."
Asked whether the new film was a feminist take on the classic story, she said: "I definitely would agree with that.
"This is Alice 10 years later... when she goes to wonderland she's experiencing a return to self and I think it's a wonderful take on it."
The film is a fresh approach to the classic children's book by Lewis Carroll, and sends the main character back to the world of her childhood adventures to be reunited with old friends after a decade away.
Teenage girls turned out in force to see Depp, who arrived wearing a dark suit and open neck shirt and dashed up the carpet to greet some of them.
As well as Hathaway as the White Queen, the movie features Depp as the Mad Hatter, Helena Bonham Carter as the Red Queen, and Australian rising star Mia Wasikowska as Alice.
Director Burton is famed for his unconventional approach to classic tales, such as his 2007 movie "Sweeney Todd" and "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" from 2005.
Explaining the thinking behind his new version of "Alice in Wonderland", he said: "I didn't think there was a definitive version of it, there's been 20 something versions of it and none of them ever connected to me.
"So the idea was to take that material, set it in a different story making her a little bit older and exploring the idea of someone's internal life."
Charles and Camilla chatted to the cast and senior crew at the premiere, that was being held in aid of the prince's Foundation For Children and the Arts, an organisation offering youngsters the chance to access the arts world.
Hours before Thursday's premiere, cinema chain Odeon agreed to show the film after earlier saying they would not screen it in Britain, Ireland and Italy in a row over Disney's planned DVD release date for the movie.
The Walt Disney Company is releasing the DVD of the film 12 weeks after its big-screen debut instead of the usual 17 weeks.

Friday, February 26th 2010

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