LEGION M INVESTOR BLOG WRITTEN BY: Meredith Schindehette
At 5:13 pm Mountain Time on Friday, March 31 Legion M told me I had won a ticket to the LA Premiere of Colossal!
Cue frantic packing.
I live near Boulder, CO, but a few weeks prior to this call, I booked a flight to LA, so I could join Legion M's opening weekend events for the movie there. When I won the ticket to the Colossal premiere, I changed my flights, packed my bags, and gave my husband instructions for the kids. I hopped on a plane three days earlier than expected with my heart beat still throbbing in my throat.
I never attended a movie premiere before, but the set up outside the Vista Theater in Hollywood mirrored my expectations pretty well. Paparazzi set up with cameras and lights in front of the red carpet. Celebrities, including director Nacho Vigalondo, actor Austin Stowell, and Legion M special guest, sci-fi icon Nichelle Nichols posed for photographs under the marquee. Lucky investors, MeriJewel Burr, Shaun Colquhoun, Jonathan McMahon, Rao Meka, Mark Rabinowitz, Aaron Wheeler, and I introduced ourselves to each other, while the stars of Legion M Official joined us, Jeff, Terri, Damian, and David, as well as a handful of other Legion M guests, including Fon Davis, Thunder Levin, and Eddie Perez.
Around 7:20 or so - before Anne Hathaway or Jason Sudeikis arrived - we were ushered into the theater and told to sit in any seat that didn't have a white paper taped to it. Of course, nearly every seat had white paper on it. Those papers indicated reserved seating for the director, producer, and actors' friends and special guests, so the Legion M group split into four areas around the intimate, gilded theater. Four of us sat house right, three rows from the screen, and when Anne and Jason came into the theater, they briefly sat in front of us just a row away.
Neon executives, Tom Quinn and Tim League, as well as Nacho and Anne gave a brief introduction to the film before the screening. We could feel their enthusiasm, and everyone in the theater seemed genuinely excited to see the movie. I knew I would enjoy the film even before Tuesday night, but I liked it even more than I could have imagined. It has heart and soul - tackling very real, human issues despite having a colossal kaiju stomping through a city.
Going in, I thought the movie would feel light and comedic, not quite a RomCom but close: it doesn't. The vibe is much closer to a dark comedy. I thought it might include elements of "monster movie" action-adventure: it doesn't. The main characters fight the kaiju with self-realization rather than missiles, taking the audience on a surprising ride of laughter, anticipation, unease, disgust, and vindication. If inclined, you can dissect the movie's themes and characters fully, and it offers rich fodder for those types of discussions. Or, you can simply enjoy watching it and let it take you to a place where inner demons really can terrorize people half a world away. The movie sticks with you (in a good way) long after you watch it. I loved it!
When the show ended, the audience filed out of the theater. The Legion M team met outside, and we gathered around Nacho, Nichelle, and Kerry O'Quinn for a photo opp. We walked a few blocks down the street to Umami Burger where the after party was in full swing. People packed into the relatively small restaurant and navigating the floor proved challenging for everyone. The Colossal actors mingled with people close to them while their bodyguards tried to blend into the crowd, and we made our way towards them. Aaron became a superhero for the night and introduced MeriJewel and I to Jason, Anne, and Austin, and he convinced them to take photos with us. I hadn't felt like that kind of a giddy dork in years!
Jason and Anne both recognized and commented on the Legion M button that Aaron wore, and the two actors were so genuinely appreciative of the support that Legion M has given to the movie. They shook our hands and gushed about it actually. They asked us how we liked the movie, and Anne's smile lit up when we told her we loved it. For fear of spoilers, I won't write what Jason said to me except that he told me I was an optimist, which makes me laugh even now because, well, I'm not. After meeting the actors, we made our way back outside and spent the rest of the night talking with the Legion M team, taking photos with the kaiju mask, and eating french fries and potato croquettes.
Everyone I met that night and at the opening weekend events with Legion M afterwards have been so lovely and gracious. I am utterly impressed with the impassioned group of people that have come together for this company, and I feel so lucky and excited just to be a small part of it! I truly believe our investment in Colossal and other unique projects will help change the way producers and artists not only finance their work but also make things they - and their fans - are passionate about. I think we are going to help the entertainment industry evolve. Onward and upward!