Richard @NIFF (& me)

So, Richard Armitage is coming to the Newcastle International Film Festival (NIFF) next week, it has been confirmed, and he will be present at 2 events on Saturday, March 31st! First off he’ll be talking with Caroline Goodall about acting (that’s from 6 – 7 pm) and after that there will be the premiere of Urban and the Shed Crew (from 7 – 10pm) including a conversation with cast and crew.

I got curious – these events are planned back to back but at different locations, would there, as a Richard Armitage fan, be a way to attend both events? So, my curiosity piqued, I found this on Google Maps…

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So, it’s a 21 minute walk between locations. If one event ends at 7 pm and the other starts at 7 pm, the time you have to get from A to B is very tight. But, I understand the premiere of Urban starts with drinks and yeah, that could be skipped. Yesterday evening I filled in the festival contact form saying I’d be going to both events (although in reality I wasn’t actually planning to go as yet) and in the feedback message was told it could take up to 4 days to receive a reply. I then went on to research some more: how much, in theory, would a flight from Amsterdam to Newcastle cost and could I, in theory, find a cheap hotel room for the night? I’d just need to sleep somewhere dry and warm and I’m quite an easy sleeper, so no luxury necessary. I found my answers but then filed it away because I figured that if it takes 4 days to hear back then it’ll all be too late anyhow and all the good deals for flights and hotels will be gone anyhow.

This afternoon, when I finally got around to checking my personal e-mail, I was surprised by a quick reply from NIFF that they had sent this morning! Here’s what they said…NIFF2

So, Urban will start its actual screening at 7.45 pm which leaves 45 minutes to get from the first venue to the second. That means that, in theory, it is doable to attend both Richard Armitage events! I was telling Mr Esther about it and he said, “just book it already!” I checked the tickets for both events (still available) and the flight (not quite as cheap as hoped but still manageable and available for the same price as the night before) and the hotel room (one single room left, hotel is about 1 km away, a little over half a mile, from the city center). Before I knew it I had booked a trip and I have tickets to both Richard Armitage events!

NIFFI am justifying this as a birthday present for me (my birthday is on April 3rd) and Mr Esther agrees. That does cancel out the new laptop he had been thinking of getting me… yeah, I think I’m OK with choosing seeing Richard live in action over a new laptop. I can cope with this old thing for another year. 🙂 I really hope it will be worth it! And if not, hey, I’ll have had a mini-break on my own, which is always fun and feels like a luxury in itself.

Mr Esther and I lived together in Newcastle once for 5 months, back when we were students in the 1990s doing our internships there. Last summer (on a rainy day) we stood in front of the ground floor flat that we had rented all those years ago…

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… and we briefly walked through the center of town and had dinner there…

We were really just passing through and were hardly there long enough to get properly re-acquainted. I find I have forgotten a lot about Newcastle so, besides seeing Richard in the flesh again, it will be really nice to get re-acquainted again with the city!