Today’s virtual press junket for Guillermo del Toro’s “Nightmare Alley” turned into a nightmare.
Both stars Bradley Cooper and Cate Blanchett are completely MIA and not participating. Cooper was never on the docket, Blanchett was. But she was up at 3:30 this morning and Zoomed in from London for the Q&A after the premiere at Alice Tully Hall, so she’s probably sleeping now. Still, it’s kind of crazy that the film’s two big stars aren’t doing press.
On top of that, del Toro was originally offered in a solo Q&A to press in an invite to the Critics Choice Association. But this morning Searchlight Films sent out a message that del Toro was being combined with actors Rooney Mara and Richard Jenkins. It’s very unusual for a director of del Toro’s importance not to do his own Q&A. Also missing from the entire press junket is screenwriter Kim Morgan, who’s never written a movie before but recently married del Toro.
None of this should come as any surprise to the press. We were told that there was “absolutely not” going to be a reception or event after last night’s screening. And yet, as the audience poured out of the Alice Tully theater, it was clear that certain guests were being herded upstairs to a private party. Both directors Wes Anderson and Joel Coen were spotted, as well as actress Gina Gershon. The lobby was suddenly filled with press people who’d attended the screening but were now told by security that the building was closed to them, and to get out fast.