Skopelos, Greece: Extremely Low-Key Outdoor Screening for Premier of 'Mamma Mia'

So Sunday night and the lights are low, as Bjorn and Benny almost wrote, turned out to be a tremendous evening, and I speak as someone who attended the world's smallest-ever Abba event -

the world premiere of Mamma Mia! The Movie on the tiny Greek island of Skopelos.

How did this David and Goliath of Abba entertainment compare? On the island in the western Aegean, where most of the film was shot, none of the movie's big names turned up for the charming, low-key event in 2008.

In fact, the only stars there were the ones that glittered in the inky sky.

At the tiny open-air Orpheus cinema in Skopelos town, we sat on canvas garden chairs and watched the film on a much more humble screen than the O2 monster.

In fact, it was a rather makeshift affair, strung between two houses. You could see clothes flapping on the washing lines behind.

You could even make out the plastic pegs.

Back then, the only preshow entertainment was a turn from the local mayor, who made a speech which was nearly drowned out by wailing feedback and the thrash of cicadas in the plum trees.

The film had to be stopped halfway through to change reels, but enthusiasm did not dim. Afterwards there was hot spinach pie and cocktails and questions from the locals.

'This man, Pierce Brosnan. Is he a singer?' they wondered.

Well, we are all still wondering about that. In the meantime, the Mamma Mia! Phenomenon has rolled on to conquer the world.

The stage show has been seen by more than 40 million people around the globe, while the film has grossed ВЈ69.16 million at the UK box office alone.

Jan Moir

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