At 7 p.m. today in Houston, Taylor Swift will be taking the stage at NRG Stadium to perform one of the final shows of her “Reputation” tour. But at 1:41 a.m. this morning, Swift was nestled in a banquette seat inside New York’s Tavern on the Green, sitting next to her boyfriend Joe Alwyn.
Alwyn was celebrating the premiere of the film “The Favourite,” which screened at Lincoln Center Friday night to usher in the New York Film Festival. Members of the cast and crew — including Emma Stone, Nicholas Hoult, Olivia Colman and director Yorgos Lanthimos — started the evening on the red carpet, attended a screening of the film, then ended up at the tony restaurant located on Central Park’s west side. The evening may have begun with a celebration of the new movie, but Swift’s surprise arrival changed the whole vibe of the thing. Suddenly, she appeared inside the main dining room and a small frenzy ensued.
“Where is she?” one young woman asked frantically.
“She’s right there!” her friend responded, trying to get a picture.
“That’s Taylor Swift!” another guy said, pointing right at her.
Publicists blocked off the immediate area and called for backup; security subsequently surrounded their table, telling guests who tried to walk through to go around. Some members of Swift and Alwyn’s team even stood up or sat on the arms of their chairs so they could obstruct views of the couple.
Swift and Alwyn largely ignored what was going on around them and seemingly enjoyed themselves. The pop singer declined photographs and interviews.
When she first got there, Swift devoured shrimp cocktail and the other appetizers delivered to her table. Her hair was half pinned back, with blonde tendrils falling at the sides of her face, and she wore the red lipstick she so often sings about. Next to thin and boyish-looking Alwyn, the two emanated Barbie and Ken. She touched his chin lovingly while speaking to someone. Alwyn stood on the banquette and walked behind Swift, holding her shoulder for support, when he left the table.
Irish actor Barry Keoghan, who was in Lanthimos’ 2017 film “The Killing of the Sacred Deer,” and his girlfriend Shona Guerin were two lucky individuals granted access into the kingdom that was the circumference of Swift and Alwyn’s table. Keoghan gave Alwyn dap while Swift met Guerin.
“Hi, I’m Taylor,” the pop singer said to her. “You look so cute.”
Rewind five hours prior, to the red carpet at the top of the evening: Alwyn briefly touched on what he does to retain privacy in a world that wants to know very badly what he’s up to.
“I don’t know if I take extra steps [to maintain privacy], it’s just being normal, and not offering up things I don’t want to share because they’re personal to me,” Alwyn said. “Just like anyone you bump into on the street wouldn’t unload themselves in that way.”
Stone has said in the past that Lanthimos doesn’t like discussing characters in his films with the actors. Why’s that?
“I like to be able to observe actors on set,” Lanthimos explained. “I’m able to have some kind of distance and a clear eye, not having the character casted in detail before with them. I can observe like an audience member. They can make their own decisions. It’s quite a free process and they can bring whatever they want, without being limited to the ideas that we have about the character beforehand.”
Lanthimos then headed toward the theater to present his film, which Jennifer Lawrence and Justin Theroux (who had a portable charger for his Juul and wore sunglasses during the movie) also came to see. While he walked off, Lanthimos looked at his publicist and exclaimed, “Oh, Jesus!”
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