LOS ANGELES — Though Moby, Chris Kirkpatrick and Fred Durst were understandably absent at Eminem's "8 Mile" premiere Wednesday, another of his targets did turn up, belly shirt, big hat, blonde locks and all. (Click for photos from the red carpet.)
"I hear great things [about Eminem's acting ability], I really do," Christina Aguilera insisted on her way up the red carpet. "I wouldn't be here if I didn't. I heard that the movie's great. I heard it's directed wonderfully. I heard that he's great in it, so I'm really excited."
Part of where X-Tina heard all that was from the seemingly inescapable "8 Mile" ads everywhere she turns. "Whoever's doing his promotional department for this is doing a kick-ass job, that's for sure," she pointed out.
"I expect it to be good," Kid Rock said with Pamela Anderson on his arm. "Everything else he's touched has turned to gold, so why wouldn't this?"
"It's going to be good, I just don't like these premiere things," Anderson frowned, glancing around at all the paparazzi, TV cameras and screaming fans. "Last one I was at was 'Jimmy Neutron.' I'm not used to all of this stuff."
"The red carpet throws us off," Rock agreed.
Em's "8 Mile" co-star Brittany Murphy, on the other hand, looked right at home on the red carpet, mugging for the press with the hyperactive, animated energy she's becoming known for.
"Honesty, purity," she enthused when quizzed about what to expect from "8 Mile." "A good laugh, a great time, amazing music and inspiration."
As is by now well established, in Eminem's first big movie he plays a rapper struggling in Detroit's underground scene. Having worked closely with him on the project, Murphy, Mekhi Pfifer and Taryn Manning were all confident he could pull off a role even further from his real-life persona.
"I'd like to see him in a period piece," Murphy said, smiling. "As an English jockey. He could basically do anything he sets his mind to. I believe if he decided to be a biochemist [he could]. ... I have great faith in his talents and brilliance and genius and all that jazz. ... I would love to see him in a 1920s gangster flick. I think that would be really cool."
Even stars who haven't acted with him agreed. "Anyone who listens to his music knows he's got a good sense of humor," said Ashton Kutcher of "Dude, Where's My Car?" "So I absolutely think he could do comedy. No question."
Other celebrities who came out to see Em's film debut included Dr. Dre, Mya, Queen Latifah, Macy Gray, Mya and Kate Bosworth.
— Ryan J. Downey, with additional reporting by Nick Zano