Ron Burgundy stays classy on Sydney red carpet

  • 24/11/2013

A frazzled looking 20-something is holding up a sign that reads "Stay classy, San Diego".

Except "San Diego" has a line through it. Scrawled in its place is "Sydney".

Sydney was keeping it classy on Sunday evening with thousands turning up to Moore Park's Entertainment Quarter for the Australasian premiere of the second Anchorman film.

With them came signs, t-shirts and catch phrases from a movie that's almost a decade old, Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy. That film wasn't an instant critical success, but gained a huge amount of traction by the time it made it to DVD.

People loved it. They demanded more. And now they have it.

Screams went up from the crowd. Australian B and C grade celebs had been dribbling down the red carpet, with heavily applied makeup crusting on their faces like an old piece of pavlova.

Then, finally, the A-graders everyone had been waiting for. First came director Adam McKay, then the Channel 4 news team: Paul Rudd, David Koechner, Steve Carell and Ron Burgundy himself, Will Ferrell.

He got the biggest screams. People scream "Ron" more than "Will". It doesn't take long for Ferrell to reach TV3 on the red carpet. Somehow, this New Zealand TV network has ended up in front of Reuters and APTN.

"It doesn't cease to amaze us," Ferrell says on the first film's eventual success. He says he's a fan of news, which makes the comedy flow easily.

"Even when I was a little kid, I loved watching the 6 o'clock news. I took some comfort in it. I love the individual personalities… and they're just excellent fun to make fun of."

Brick Tamland, played by Steve Carell, is a weatherman dumbed down to the ultimate stereotype. So far, I've spotted at least three "I love lamp" t-shirts in the crowds.

Carell tells me none of the films so-called catch phrases were intended to be catch phrases.

"None of them were pitched as catch phrases. I think in order for something to take hold that way, they have to be something that just kind of happens."

He grins that wry Carell grin, saying: "You know what is a perfect example? 'Milk was a bad choice'. I don't think anyone thought that was gonna make a t-shirt. But I think it's one of the funniest lines in that first movie."

Throughout this conversation, Will Ferrell has doubled back on himself. After talking to the 30-or-so media outlets on the carpet, he was back meeting the fans that had been screaming his name the whole time.

He signs, he poses for photos. At one point, he kisses a woman's cheek as her boyfriend takes a photo.

Twitter is lighting up with #anchorman2 tags. He high-fives a pimply-faced teenager. Paul Rudd appears to be having the most fun, clowning around with reporters. He grabs the TV3 camera and microphone, speaking directly down the lens.

At some point, Kirsten Dunst makes a break down the carpet. It's obvious she doesn't want to speak to the media today. There's puzzlement among the journalists as to exactly what the star is doing in the movie. About two hours later, I find out.

I won't go into the details, but there are a number of cameos in this film that took my breath away.


Two of the cameos are Liam Neeson and Sacha Baron Cohen.


There's no doubt new catch phrases will be born from the sequel, and at one stage there's a fight with a shark. Burgundy's loyal mutt Baxter is back, and Brick finds love in his female equivalent.

As with part one, Brick often feels like the glue that's holding this thing together; any dull moment is quickly muted by Brick opening his mouth, or even just throwing someone a glance.

There's also something quite comforting in seeing the Channel 4 news team back together. And yes, there's a big fight. And yes - it's bigger than anything we've seen before.

As for the funniest bit of the film? I tend to agree with what Koechner (Champ Kind) told me on the carpet: "There's a particular bit of comedy involving an RV that's hysterical to me," he said, winking.

Maybe it wasn't a wink, more of a twitch. Regardless, he was correct. But you'll have to wait to see the film to find out why.

Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues opens in New Zealand on December 19.

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source: newshub archive