Chris Hemsworth‘s new blockbuster Thor: Love and Thunder is bursting with A-list talent, including the likes of Natalie Portman, Matt Damon and Melissa McCarthy.
Yet the movie’s Sydney premiere was more like a game of ‘guess who?’ as a hodgepodge of D-list celebrities fought for attention on the red carpet.
While film premieres were once a place reserved for distinguished actors and directors, the Thor screening bizarrely saw bona-fide celebrities like Hemsworth share the red carpet with obscure reality TV has-beens.
In many ways, the event perfectly summed up the sorry state of Sydney’s nightlife, after a leading concert promoter declared the Australian city’s reputation as a global destination was ‘in the toilet’ following years of stagnation.
Worlds collided at the Sydney premiere of Thor: Love and Thunder on Monday as the Hemsworths rubbed shoulders with reality TV has-beens. (Pictured: Chris Hemsworth)
Perhaps the most perplexing appearance was that of ex-Married At First Sight star Nasser Sultan, who has spent the past four years chasing superstardom to no avail.
In baffling scenes, Sultan was spotted trying to talk to former TV newsreader Jessica Rowe, a respected journalist and household name.
Other one-time reality stars seen on the red carpet included Big Brother housemates Aisha Jade and Chad Hurst, Dancing with the Stars alum Christian Wilkins, and Bachelor rejects Bella Varelis and Brittany Hockley.
While film premieres were once a place reserved for distinguished actors and directors, the Thor screening bizarrely saw bona-fide celebrities like Hemsworth share the red carpet with obscure reality TV has-beens. (Pictured: former Big Brother housemate Aisha Jade)
In baffling scenes, MAFS contestant Nasser Sultan (left) was spotted trying to talk to former TV newsreader Jessica Rowe (right), a respected journalist and household name
Bella’s boyfriend Will Stokoe, a photographer and small-time influencer, was seen strutting down the red carpet in a casual tracksuit and beanie – just metres away from the few appropriately suited-and-booted Hollywood stars.
There were just a handful of genuine A-listers spotted among the sea of low-tier ‘celebrities’ at Monday’s premiere, including Thor director Taika Waititi.
Hemsworth attended with his wife Elsa Pataky and their twin sons Tristan and Sasha.
Bachelor alum Brittany Hockley (left) shared the red carpet with model Erin Holland (right)
Former Australian Survivor contestant Sarah Tilleke also made an appearance
Former Bachelor star Bella Varelis (left) brought along her boyfriend Will Stokoe (right), who looked moody on the red carpet in a decidedly casual outfit
Will Stokoe (pictured), a photographer and small-time influencer, was seen strutting down the red carpet in a casual tracksuit and beanie – just metres away from the few appropriately suited-and-booted Hollywood stars
They were joined by Chris’ brother Luke Hemsworth, who is known for starring in the TV show Westworld, as well as Luke’s wife Samantha and their children.
Many of the film’s stars failed to attend the Sydney premiere – including leading lady Natalie Portman, who reprises her role as Jane Foster in Thor: Love and Thunder.
Tessa Thompson, Russell Crowe, Christian Bale, Matt Damon, Chris Pratt and Melissa McCarthy were also no-shows.
Christian Wilkins (pictured) attempted to steal the show by arriving in a plunging black gown
Bachelor couple Tim Robards (left) and Anna Heinrich (right) looked glamorous as they posed on the very same carpet at Hollywood superstars
The fourth Thor movie sees the titular hammer-wielding superhero go up against the villainous Gorr the God Butcher, played by Bale.
The film is set in the aftermath of Avengers: Endgame, which saw Thor (Hemsworth) step down as King of Asgard and join the Guardians of the Galaxy.
He enlists the help of Valkyrie (Thompson), Jane Foster (Portman) and other friends to help fight Gorr.
There were just a handful of genuine A-listers spotted among the sea of low-tier ‘celebrities’ at Monday’s premiere, including Thor director Taika Waititi (pictured)
Chris and his wife Elsa Pataky (left) turned heads as they posed in matching all-black outfits
The couple were also joined by Chris’ brother Luke Hemsworth, his wife Samantha and their children (all pictured)
Chris made his latest film, the Netflix sci-fi drama Spiderhead, in Queensland.
His production company, Wild State Productions, brought Thor 3 and 4, Extraction 1 and 2, Spiderhead and Interceptor to film in Australia.
Thor: Love and Thunder, directed by Taika Waititi, hits Australian and UK cinemas on July 7, and on July 8 in the United States.
The slow death of Sydney: How the 24/7 party town is now world-famous for being boring as hell – as insiders claim it’s going to take YEARS to get its mojo back
The ambitious but controversial music promoter who organised some of the biggest parties Australia has ever seen says Sydney is officially boring – and the rest of the world thinks so too.
Arash ‘AJ’ Maddah, who promoted the Big Day Out and several other live music events, said in March Sydney’s reputation as a global destination was ‘in the toilet’.
Maddah is one of several music industry figures who expressed frustration to Daily Mail Australia about Sydney’s dire nightlife as criticism grows over the city’s stagnation.
While other cities begin to reboot their post-pandemic entertainment scenes by announcing big gigs, Sydney – despite a welcome end to the hated ‘no-singing, no dancing’ ban – has little on the cards to excite those who love to go clubbing or watch live music.
The ambitious but controversial music promoter who organised some of the biggest parties Australia has ever seen says Sydney is officially boring – and the rest of the world thinks so too. (Pictured: teenagers moshing at the Sydney Big Day Out on January 26, 2011)
From 2014 to 2020, Sydney’s Kings Cross, which had been a haven for music fans, was hit by the infamous lockout laws. (Pictured: a deserted Darlinghurst Road)
Even though the idea of a vibrant nightlife seems foreign to Sydneysiders, photos from four decades prove the city has had plenty of famously unforgettable nights.
‘At the moment our reputation internationally is in the toilet – people in the music industry view us a police state,’ said Maddah, who was the last person to put on a show for 100,000 Sydneysiders with Soundwave in 2013, which was headlined by Metallica at Sydney Olympic Park.
‘I tell them it’s rubbish that we’re a police state; we’re free, but it’s just boring here.’
So does Mr Maddah think Sydney can ever recover and regain its reputation as a global party town?
Arash ‘AJ’ Maddah (pictured), who promoted the Big Day Out and other live music events, said in March that Sydney’s reputation as a global destination was ‘in the toilet’
‘Yeah I do, it can happen again,’ he said. ‘I don’t think it can happen year-in, year-out like it used to, but maybe as a one-off event?
‘It’s going to take some time to recover, we’ve lost a bit of that live culture character.’
‘We’ve moved from the mosh pit to the couch in the last decade. Look at the amount of money music generates compared to video gaming and streaming services.’
With Covid fears waning, people in Sydney have finally been granted permission to dance and sing after being banned from doing so for months – even at outdoor events.
While there is relief over the end of restrictions, the reality is that Sydney is still a long way from the large-scale music events of yesteryear.
Live music events are way down compared to pre-Covid levels, there are few festival tickets to buy and club owners shrug their shoulders over the prospects of filling venues that have now been empty for years.
By the mid-noughties, crowds of 50,000-plus were common at festivals – but little did fans know these halcyon days were fast coming to an end. (Pictured: fans squeeze together to watch Major Lazer at the last-ever Big Day Out in Sydney on January 26, 2014)
The 2021 New Year’s Eve fireworks display was a clear sign of how the nightlife patterns of Sydneysiders had changed significantly due to Covid, with underwhelming crowds for a night that has packed hundreds of thousands beside the harbour for many years