Stardust And A Sarcophagus

So on Monday I did two interesting things:

In the afternoon I had an MRI scan on my lower back, which involved me squeezing into a long metal tube and listening to The Four Tops on West Middlesex Hospital’s headphones while the machine clanged and twanged and wobbled around me for 15 minutes. It was kind of like being inside a machine gun (for the first half of the scan) and a large guitar while somebody played bad Russian folk music (for the second half of the scan). I also made the MRI technician scratch his head in surprise when I pointed out the large mural of the Egyptian pyramids on the wall and asked, “Is that there because the MRI machine looks a bit like a sarcophagus?” To which he replied, “Huh. I’ve never thought of that before.”

I guess you don’t need much of an imagination to be an MRI technician.

In the morning I was lucky enough to interview Neil Gaiman in a swanky room in a swanky hotel in a rather swanky part of London. There was no clanging or twanging or pictures of the pyramids; instead there was a large poster of Stardust propped on the mantelpiece, a nice cup of tea and some interesting conversation. Conversation which began like this:

Neil: “Hey, Jayne. So, I read on your blog that you saw Stardust but couldn’t say what you thought because you signed an embargo form.”

Me: “Uh… you read my blog?”

Neil: “Doesn’t everyone?”

Me: *gapes like a goldfish*

Alright, so I’m sure Neil Gaiman doesn’t really read this blog. He probably stumbled across it once while looking for people’s reactions to Stardust. And it’s not as though I’ve got anything to say that a man who scores nearly two million hits on Google would want to read. Also, as I pointed out to him, my blog usually consists of me wibbling on about sexy men and not much else.

(Which reminds me: I told him I’d call him a sexy man so he wouldn’t feel left out. So, um, consider yourself sexy, Mr Gaiman. And I don’t care what The Guardian has to say about your beard: it most certainly is NOT “disreputable”. That article seemed really prissy to me, anyway…)

Another thing that came out of the interview was that I finally got official permission from the film company to talk about Stardust. Which means that at last I can say:

It’s wonderful.

It’s fun. It’s silly. It’s passionate. It’s beautiful. It’s full of derring-do and even a little derring-don’t. It’s brimming with sparkling performances, including a break-out turn from Charlie Cox as the film’s hero (girls, get ready to drool), a hilarious cameo from Robert De Niro and a chance for Michelle Pfeiffer to eat the scenery in a way the actress has never, ever done before.

Stardust is everything The Princess Bride was back in its day: a heartwarming fairy tale for boys and girls to fall in love with. It’ll come out in Britain in October – please go and see it. It’s genuinely lovely!

And that, with the exception of an amusing story about a ferret, is pretty much everything that happened to me on Monday.

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11 Comments

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11 responses to “Stardust And A Sarcophagus

  1. Paul

    I am REALLY looking forward to this. I’ve been a Gaiman fan for 15 years+ (or something frightening like that) and the trailer for this is excellent.

    Might have to re-read the book beforehand, just to see how closely they stick to it 🙂

  2. neil h

    Yes, but what I *really* want to know about Stardust is what the swordplay is like? 🙂

    When I had a MRI scan last year I thought it looked like something out of Stargate SG1. When do you get the results?

  3. GoldAnne

    Hey !
    found you again!!!
    wow lot of catching up to do, hope you are ok!!!
    goldanne,,,

    super pussy that guy paul has ginger!!!!

  4. Jayne Nelson

    The swordplay is pretty cool, Neil. There’s a fabulous fight at the end involving a corpse, too. Not something you see every day!

    And results… ten days or so. Fingers crossed I won’t need surgery!

  5. Paul

    Glad to hear it Jayne!

    Goldanne – glad you like my pussy (never thought I’d be saying that) unfortunately Thomas died two years ago 😦

    Last October I took the plunge again and rescued a young ginger, who I call Harry. He was one year old last month 🙂

  6. Lerxst

    “I’m sure Neil Gaiman doesn’t really read this blog”

    You’re just trying to get him to post “Oh, yes I do”, aren’t you!

    Definitely looking forward to Stardust. Should be better than MirrorMask which, while very pretty, I found just a bit uninspiring.

  7. Lizwc

    What amusing story about the ferret? i want the ferret story!!! I promise I’ll go and see Stardust, though I have the fear because I loved the book so much and would hate for the film to mess it up… But I trust you. You say it’s lovely so I’ll go… Now about that ferret?

  8. Biddy Brumpton

    I read lizwc’s post and suddenly felt very smug that I knew the ferret story.

    Is that REALLY sad?

    Actually, don’t answer that…

  9. Jayne Nelson

    I fear I’ve built up the ferret story a bit too much, but here goes:

    I was waiting for my train and a guy walked by with a ferret on a lead. “Awwwww!” I cried, to the amusement of the posh businessman standing next to me. Then I went to buy a coffee from the cafe on the platform, only to accidentally spill a tower of empty cups across the counter. As I was apologising profusely, the posh businessman suddenly came up behind me and told the guy behind the counter, “She’s still excited about the ferret.”

    And the guy behind the counter had ABSOLUTELY NO BLEEDIN’ IDEA WHAT HE WAS TALKING ABOUT and gave me the strangest look I think I’ve ever received.

    And, er, that’s it.

    It really was a cute ferret though.

  10. Lerxst

    Pointless ferret trivia: a male ferret is known as a hob; a castrated male ferret is a hobble.

    Well,it amused me.

  11. Lizwc

    Well I’ve just laughed out loud at the ferret story. That really amused me. Not built up too much at all. Thank you for satisfying my ferret-curiosity.

    And no I’m not at all jealous of biddy cos she knew the story first. Not at all. no. not even a bit. She has no cause to be smug. It’s not like I begged for the story or anything…

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