‘Battleship’ premiere: Rihanna rocks, Taylor Kitsch gets his kicks


As befits a movie filled with explosions and visual effects spectacle, “Battleship” director-producer Peter Berg rolled up to the film’s U.S. premiere Thursday in a “shredder,” modeled after aliens’ powerful metal machines in the movie.

Taylor Kitsch, Alexander Skarsgård, Brooklyn Decker, Rihanna and others in the cast didn’t make quite that grand an entrance but were welcomed with plenty of cheers from the crowd flanking the blue carpet – especially the hip-hop artist, whose fans constantly shouted “Ri-Ri!” as she made her way toward the theater.

“Battleship” reunited several people from “Friday Night Lights,” including Kitsch, actor Jesse Plemons, producer Sarah Aubrey and Berg, who developed “Lights” for NBC.


While introducing the cast to the audience before the premiere screening, Berg said of Kitsch, “He’s like my crazy little brother.”

Other costars from the TV shows that have amassed fans for “Battleship’s” leads were also on hand at the Nokia Theatre event: Connie Britton of “Friday Night Lights” and Joe Manganiello of Skarsgård’s “True Blood.”

Kitsch spent countless hours filming football-game scenes for “Friday Night Lights,” but in “Battleship” he got to show off his soccer skills: The movie features a game between the U.S and Japanese navies.

“It wasn’t in the script when I signed on,” the”John Carter”star said on the blue carpet.

“[Berg] phoned me when I was in Austin and he was like ‘Can you play?’ and I was like, ‘Yeah, I played a long time,’ and he was like, ‘OK, good, I’ll call you back.’ We had a lot of fun shooting that.”

Though a formidable rival in the soccer scene, Tadanobu Asano (Capt. Nagata) told the Ministry of Gossip that in real life Kitsch is “really, really athletic, so I was trying hard to keep up with him.”

The “Battleship” stars also went head-to-head with their singing skills when they gathered for a night of karaoke while promoting the movie in Tokyo.

“I outshined Rihanna like there’s no tomorrow,” Skarsgård joked. “I floored her with those songs… No, I’m not good at that stuff.”

Cast member were serenaded by their costars on set too, as Decker revealed to Ministry of Gossip, “There was one scene where [Berg] asked me to rap my lines like Rihanna.”

“Battleship,” which opens in U.S. theaters May 18, also stars Liam Neeson, John Tui, Adam Godley and Col. Gregory D. Gadson.


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