SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE director Danny Boyle is to be the artistic brains behind the London Olympics opening and closing ceremonies, it was announced today.
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Together with a bumper creative team made up of film and theatre director Steven Baldry, Beijing Olympics designer Mark Fisher, Catherine Ugwu, who ran the Manchester Commonwealth Games ceremonies and live TV director Hamish Hamilton, Boyle aims “to provide a thrilling, enthralling, captivating evening.”
“I’m delighted to be part of the team,” said Boyle.
“It’s a completely unique opportunity to contribute to what I’m sure are going to be a fantastic games. I’m really excited to be involved.”
Boyle and co. have a year or so to sort out four huge ceremonies – the opening and closing events at both the Olympics and Paralympics – and the plan is to bring “creative continuity across all four ceremonies”.
Not that anyone’s putting the five creative heads under pressure to deliver or anything, but:
“The opening and closing ceremonies are the jewels in the crown of any Olympics and Paralympics and are one of the benchmarks against which all games are judged,” warned Jeremy Hunt, Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport.
Boris Johnson also weighed in on the raising expectations front.
“The work they have produced over the years has been quite extraordinary, with an impact not just in the UK, but also on the international stage,” said the London Mayor.
“They exemplify some of the greatest attributes we have – creativity, vision, and intelligence – which will be critical to ensuring shows that are as stunning as they are uniquely British.”