Star Wars actor John Boyega was pulled offstage before his performance of Woyzeck on Saturday when London’s Old Vic was evacuated due to an unspecified security alert.
Boyega has the lead role in the play. He’s also part f the latest episode of the Star Wars saga, The Last Jedi, which arrives in theaters in December.
Old Vic evacuated
Almost a week after the suicide bombing attack on Ariana Grande’s Manchester concert, England continues to have a tense week full of evacuations and alerts. On Saturday afternoon, London’s Old Vic was evacuated. The reason was an unspecified security alert.
The evacuation took place ten minutes before the play started. The audience, cast, and crew of Woyzeck were among the hundreds of people evacuated from the Old Vic Theatre in London after a security alert.
The situation was initially documented online as people, included theatergoers, tweeted about their evacuation.
During the evacuation, neither the Theater’s staff nor the Metropolitan Police used the words “bomb threat” to describe the situation. A short time later the situation was cleared by both the police and the theater.
The cast and audience were moved to the nearby Imperial War Museum gardens. The theater’s management confirmed via Twitter that the evacuation was a safety precaution.
The venue near Waterloo was evacuated along with nearby pubs and restaurants after the security alert was raised.
The United Kingdom has been on high alert following last week’s bombing at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, which killed 22 people. Earlier Saturday, the U.K. terrorism threat level was reduced from “critical” to “severe”. Authorities around the country remain on high alert.
The actor has not commented on the incident.
The incident was found not to be suspicious. Thank you for your understanding.
— The Old Vic (@oldvictheatre) May 27, 2017
John Boyega became a household name after his role as Finn in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Now the actor made his return to the stage. His career went stellar in Woyzeck at London’s Old Vic theater with a leading role. He has been widely praised.
The actor was really excited to make his return on stage with this role and described it as “a big leap for me.” Boyega had previously played minor roles in plays before. Being cast in Star Wars certainly helps him now. “Would I have been as confident being on stage without Star Wars, without that appeal to draw people into the theater? No.”
He added, “So I’m glad I got Star Wars and I’m glad the Old Vic made this decision at this time.”
Boyega plays a young British soldier in 1980s Berlin during the Cold War. We first meet Woyzeck in the grim Berlin apartment where he lives with his partner Marie (Sarah Greene) and their baby. Unable to afford the rent, he takes part in a paid medical trial and his world starts to fall apart.
Boyega comes back as Finn
The play is adapted by Harry Potter and the Cursed Child writer Jack Thorne from German playwright Georg Buchner’s original work, which was unfinished at his death in 1837.
The Last Jedi, the next film in the Star Wars franchise will be released in December. Boyega will be back as Finn. Alongside his co-star Daisy Ridley as Rey and original stars Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker and the late Carrie Fisher, who had recorded her scenes as Princess Leia before she died in December 2016.
There are also rumors that Prince William and Prince Harry will be appearing. The pair allegedly filmed cameo appearances while touring the set of Pinewood Studios in April.
“No comment on that,” John Boyega laughs, “but they look good too”.
Manchester concert bombing investigation
Almost a week after the Manchester attack Britain reduced its terrorism threat from critical to severe on Saturday. Authorities say the have made a major progress in unraveling the plot behind the attack.
So far, Police has made 11 arrests on suspicious of terrorism offenses. All are men, aged between 18 and 44. Also, Manchester bomber Salman Abedi’s father and younger brother are in detention in Libya.
British Prime Minister Theresa May said “a significant amount of police activity” and several arrests had led to the level being lowered. May also urged Britons to remain vigilant during the holiday weekend. The troops will gradually withdraw beginning on Monday.
Investigations lead to a network around the Abedi, the bomber, who’s dismantling at the moment as the investigation goes on.
However, the police consider there are still “gaps in our understanding” of the plot. Investigators probed Abedi’s potential links to jihadis in Britain, Europe, Libya and the Middle East.
A total of 116 people were treated in hospitals after the bombing. On Saturday, 63 people injured in the bombing remained hospitalized, of which 20 were in critical condition.
Security remains tight across Britain as hundreds of thousands of people attended major soccer matches, concerts, and other big holiday weekend events.
Source: USA Today