Celebs f lock Bolt’s movie pre­miere in Lon­don, hail sprinter’s suc­cess

Jamaica Gleaner - - SOMETHING EXTRA - An­dré Lowe Spe­cial Projects Ed­i­tor – Sports an­dre.lowe@glean­erjm.com

Pa­trons at­tend­ing the Na­tional Bak­ing Com­pany’s ‘A Ja­maican Made Christ­mas’ on Sun­day. A two-day pop-up shop­ping ex­pe­ri­ence al­low­ing 66 lo­cal man­u­fac­tur­ers a plat­form to show­case their prod­ucts to reach a larger au­di­ence than their re­sources may other­wise al­low, the Ja­maican Made Christ­mas was held at The Ja­maica Pe­ga­sus ho­tel in New Kingston.

QLONDON, Eng­land: UITE AC­CUS­TOMED to mo­tor­ing along through­out his ca­reer, track and field’s golden boy Usain Bolt took his time as he made his way down the red car­pet at last night’s Lon­don pre­miere of his biopic, I am Bolt, and he wasn’t alone.

Bolt’s larger-than-life fig­ure brought out some of the big­gest names in Bri­tish sports, tele­vi­sion and mu­sic as the isle’s Alis­ters shone bright un­der the lights dur­ing a nearly two-hour, pre-movie set, which took place in freez­ing con­di­tions at the West End’s Odeon Le­ices­ter Square cin­ema.

Hun­dreds of fans took up every avail­able inch of space, while the world’s me­dia placed sharp fo­cus on the Ja­maican su­per­star and his al­most-as­su­per friends, which in­cluded movie-mak­ing heavy­weight Leo Pearl­man, foot­balling stars Ra­heem Ster­ling, Cesc Fabre­gas, Santi Ca­zorla, Olivier Giroud and Robert Pires, One Di­rec­tion’s Liam Payne, ten­nis great Boris Becker, pop stars Geri Horner from the Spice Girls and Olly Murs, along with track stand­outs, Mer­lene Ottey, the for­mer Ja­maican sprint­ing great, Mo Farah, Jonathan Ed­wards, Lin­ford Christie, boxer Tyson Fury and dance­hall Usain Bolt signs au­to­graphs for fan’s at the pre­miere of ‘I Am Bolt’ at the Odeon Cin­ema in Le­ices­ter Square, Lon­don.

star Sean Paul.

“I am ex­tremely proud of him. He has given the coun­try so much of a lift in terms of unity, pos­i­tives and gives a lot for the kids to look up to. To me, he is a na­tional hero. Peo­ple are sad that he might be mov­ing out of track and field soon, but what­ever he puts his mind to, he will do well,” Sean Paul said.

BOLT AN ICON

Becker hailed Bolt as le­gendary and noted that the sport will never be the same with­out his pres­ence.

“He is an icon. Peo­ple use that word so of­ten some­times,

Mis­cel­la­neous No. 2029101 but in his (Bolt’s) case, he ab­so­lutely em­bod­ies the mean­ing of the word, and not just where track and field or the Olympics is con­cerned, he goes be­yond all that,” said Becker, a six-time ma­jors cham­pion.

Clad in a navy blue Bri­oni suit, blue tie and match­ing Gucci shoes, Bolt was the first on the red car­pet where he was joined by car­ni­val cos­tume-clad danc­ing girls with pop­u­lar dance­hall artistes Al­ka­line, Pop­caan and Vybz Kar­tel, along with reg­gae crooner Chronixx, dom­i­nat­ing the disc jock’s se­lec­tions.

I am Bolt, which was codi­rected by broth­ers Gabe and Ben­jamin Turner, takes view­ers be­hind the scenes on Bolt’s jour­ney to nine Olympic gold medals and is now avail­able on dig­i­tal down­load, Blu-ray and DVD.

IAN ALLEN/PHO­TOG­RA­PHER

RI­CARDO MAKYN/ STAFF PHO­TOG­RA­PHER

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