IAR Attends 'Immortals' Blu-ray and DVD Release Party at the Playboy Mansion

Thursday, 08 March 2012 16:27 Written by  Jami Philbrick
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IAR Attends 'Immortals' Blu-ray and DVD Release Party at the Playboy Mansion

Gods and Goddesses alike gathered at the world famous Playboy Mansion on Tuesday evening, March 6th to celebrate the Blu-ray and DVD release of Immortals, which went on sale earlier that day. In attendance from the movie was Immortals producer Craig J. Flores, as well as actor Corey Sevire who played Apollo in the film. Also making an appearance at the mansion Tuesday night was actors Bruce Boxleitner (Tron: Legacy), Johnny Whitworth (Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance), Stephen Bishop (Safe House), Chris Bauer (HBO’s True Blood), Theo Rossi and Dayton Callie (Sons of Anarchy), and Jonathan Lipnicki (Jerry Maguire), as well as comedians Orlando Jones (Mad TV) and Tommy Davidson (In Living Color). Unfortunately our host, the great Hugh Hefner, did not make an appearance at the party or on the red carpet that evening.

IAR attended the red carpet gala and I had a chance to speak with Flores about producing the film. I began by asking him about his experience collaborating with visionary director Tarsem Singh. “I think Tarsem established within our first meeting that he had the movie inside his head and that he wanted to make it look Caravaggio paintings. He had it all down in his head and that is what you look for in a director to really just execute that vision seamlessly and he did.”

I followed up by asking Flores about the pivotal casting of actor Henry Cavill (the man-who-will-be-Superman) as the film’s lead character Theseus. “It’s funny because we looked at Henry for 300 for one of the roles but I won’t tell you which one,” the producer said cryptically. “He was under a holding contract to be the next Bond, and we were disappointed because we all liked him. So when it came around to casting this he was one of the first people we tried to grab. He was great on The Tudors and he just has that quality of a leader that you want to follow.”

Flores also discussed with me the film’s alternate ending, which appears on the Blu-ray and DVD collections. “That should be amazing to watch because we debated a few times on which way to go. I’m glad with what we ultimately went with, but its always exciting to see the other ways it could have gone as well.” Finally, I asked Flores if an Immortals sequel might be in the works. “I’m not going to say no, how about that,” he answered. I quickly followed that up by asking him how the sequel for 300 (which he also produced) is coming together. “It’s in the works. It’s in Warner Bros.' hands now.”

Next up, I had a chance to speak with actor Corey Sevire who plays Apollo in the film. I began by asking the actor to discuss his experience working with director Tarsem Singh. “It was awesome. I was obviously a fan of his previous two films so getting to work with such a visionary genius was amazing,” explained Sevire. “But he was great with the actors too, and he paid a lot of attention to detail, which was incredible. He had a lot of energy on the set and he did a really good job of letting us be in the moment.”

The actor also talked about the specific and unique look that the Gods have in the film. “When I was first attached to the project Tarsem said it was going to be like a Caravaggio painting meets Fight Club,” answered Sevire. “So it had this cool modern edginess to it yet it had a classic feel as well.The way he shoots it, it looks like a painting.”

I also caught up with actor/comedian Orlando Jones (The Time Machine) on the red carpet and I asked him if he was a fan of Immortals. “I’m a fan,” he quickly replied. “I thought Mickey Rourke was awesome. It’s a guy’s movie and there are not a lot of those out there. I was excited to see it.” I also asked Jones what he thought of Tarsem Singh’s unique visual style. “I love his work and I thought The Cell was a visionary piece, so I’m excited to see what he does next.” Finally, the great Bruce Boxleitner (Tron, Tron: Legacy) had this to say about the film that we were all there to honor. “In Hollywood, there are more than a few self proclaimed Immortals walking around.”

It should also be noted that while I was on the red carpet speaking to Mr. Boxleitner, Verne Troyer (A.K.A. Mini-Me) was riding up and down the carpet on a little scooter. He refused to speak to the press, instead opting to cruise back and forth on his custom made vehicle while the interviews were taking place.

After the red carpet arrivals were through, I had the pleasure of attending the star-studded party, actually marking my second time at the mansion. The outdoor tent, which is located adjacent to the infamous grotto, was filled with decorations celebrating Immortals such as life-size mannequins dressed in the costumes from the film. In addition, the iron Minotaur that King Hyperion (Mickey Rourke) uses to capture the oracles in the movie was front and center at the entrance to the party, as were Playboy style go-go dancers dressed in togas, of course. And no Playboy party would be complete without a naked woman walking around, this one covered in Immortals inspired body paint.

Another interesting story worth mentioning is that while on the red carpet, I was placed next to a photographer who kept saying, “Smile, this photo is for Hef.” I asked him if he was the Playboy Mansion’s professional photographer and he answered, “Yes, and no.” He went on to explain that he is actually a butler at the mansion but that when the regular photographer is not available he steps in. In a funny turn of events, later in the night he bussed my table at the party.

After the party, myself and a few other members of the press had the rare treat of being given a tour of the mansion. Unfortunately we did not go into the actual mansion, but we did get a tour of the grounds, which is absolutely huge. Our tour guide was a lovely woman who was referred to as the “Bunny Mother.” She took us through the bird sanctuary and then to the tennis courts. She was very nice and happy to answer our questions. My only burning question was, does Hef really live here? She assured me that he does, no matter how many times I insisted that he doesn’t. I believe that Mr. Hefner actually lives in one of the other houses on the compound and that the mansion is just for show. The “Bunny Mother” again insisted that he does really live in the mansion and even went as far as to point to a room on the second floor and said that it was Hef’s bedroom. Again, I was skeptical. She also told us that Hef has a “date night” every weekend with the bunnies that often includes a screening of the latest Hollywood film in the mansion’s private theater. She alluded to the idea that Hef’s “date nights” with the bunnies also include some X-rated fun, again, I don’t believe that for a second but who am I to question the “Bunny Mother” or Hef’s public image.

Next, we walked through the mansion’s zoo where we spotted several furry monkeys running around. We also got to walk by one of the guesthouses where we were told new bunnies often take residency. We were only able to peek into the living room but it looked like something 1975 had left behind, filled with a shag carpet and several movie poster size pictures of playmates from the ‘70s and early ‘80s. 

Finally, we were given a tour of the famed Playboy game room, which is basically a lounge/video arcade with Hef’s Hollywood Star cemented outside the entrance of the main door. The game room is equipped with a pool table, an official Playboy pinball machine, and several old school video games including Space Invaders, Pac-Man and Donkey Kong. But the best part of the game room is a little private sitting area that is towards the back of the structure. The “Bunny Mother” explained to us that Hef actually lost his virginity in the back of a VW bus and that he had that little room custom made to look just like it.

And I almost forgot, no Playboy Mansion tour would be complete without a visit to the grotto, but as you know, what happens in the grotto…stays in the grotto.

Immortals is available for purchase on Blu-ray and DVD now!

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