Drawing: Jesse Eisenberg in The Spoils

Jesse Eisenberg

Eight hours. 8 long hours. Written in words or numerically, either way it still spells out a l-o-n-g  time to wait for an autograph. Actually it was 8 hours and a few minutes, waiting to get my sketch of the BAFTA, Golden Globe and Oscar nominated Hollywood star Jesse  Eisenberg signed. But I did. It’s not my usual practice and not one I hope to make a habit of. Jesse is in London to make his West End debut as the dope-smoking, entitled, living of his wealthy parents, narcissistic bully Ben in the tragicomedy THE SPOILS, which he wrote and had its world premiere at the Alice Griffin Jewel Box Theatre in New York’s Pershing Square Signature Center last summer.

“Engrossingly acted, impeccably staged,” wrote the New York Times.

The off Broadway transfer to London’s Trafalgar Studios starts on 27 May for a three month run. It’s Jesse’s third play, all of which have stated life on the off-Broadway boards.

We – a handful of fellow collectors – found out where he was rehearsing and duly waited nearby. But Jesse had to interrupt his rehearsals to fly to Cannes to do press for his latest film CAFE SOCIETY directed by Woody Allen. Then zap back to London. We thought he was already in the building and would finish at the customary time. That plan disappeared when he actually arrived at five and quickly slipped in without us having time to catch him.

One gets to a point in this business when one has invested time that one does not want to waste by ditching the mission. In other words it would be a waste of time if you didn’t stay to get the graph. But eight hours is a long investment. Thankfully it was a nice sunny day  even though the pollen count was eight times higher than normal. It’s a recurring theme. SPOILS Sketch, sneezing and sharpie at the ready.

All was forgotten, well nearly all when we finally met meet Jesse. He thanked us for turning up and waiting. Truly one of the nicest in the business and he really liked the drawing, which is always a bonus.


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