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Red carpet goes Green

Newport Beach brothers get rare photo opportunity with favorite band as 14th annual film festival kicks off.

April 25, 2013|By Rhea Mahbubani
  • Tre Cool, Billie Joe Armstrong and Mike Dirnt, left to right, of the punk band Green Day, arrive on the red carpet for the West Coast premiere of "Broadway Idiot" during opening night of the 2013 Newport Beach Film Festival on Thursday. The movie documents how the band's album "American Idiot" became a broadway musical.
Tre Cool, Billie Joe Armstrong and Mike Dirnt, left to… (DON LEACH )

Max and Jake Caliger were in for a treat at the Newport Beach Film Festival opening Thursday.

The Newport Beach residents, who are 12 and 13 years old, respectively, arrived early at the Edwards Big Newport 6 to see their favorite band, Green Day.

As it turned out, they got what they wanted — and then some. The Caligers positioned themselves at the end of the red carpet where the night's stars were arriving, and as Billie Joe Armstrong, Tré Cool and Mike Dirnt passed by, they stopped for a photo with the brothers.

"We're so excited — I was, like, crying when I saw them," said Max, who had the unique pleasure of seeing Armstrong laughing and pretending to choke him.

Clad in T-shirts with the band members' faces printed on them, the brothers carried a guitar and even their favorite Green Day album to express their love of the Grammy-winning punk-rock band. The boys' mother, Angela, added that her sons had been hardcore fans for years and were part of the mosh pit at the band's April 18 concert in Los Angeles.

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"They have so much stage presence, put on a great show and write awesome music," Jake said.

The Caligers were particularly lucky in retrospect. While they scored a photo and personal interaction, the band, which was greeted with loud cheers (from mostly female admirers), left a moment later and refrained from giving media interviews.

The eight-day film festival, one of the most prominent in the region, debuted with the West Coast premiere of "Broadway Idiot" — a documentary woven around Green Day and its Broadway precursor "American Idiot." Before last night's show, the 80-minute film had been screened only at the South by Southwest Conferences & Festivals in Austin, Texas, in March.

This year, reviewers and programmers sifted through 2,700 films and handpicked the best 380. Over the next week, a music video program and action sports series will be rolled out, as will showcases of films from around the globe.

Filipino actor Jericho Rosales and filmmaker Ian Loreños took a 13-hour flight to be part of the festivities and celebrate the upcoming premiere of "Breakaway (Alagwa)," which centers on human trafficking in the Philippines. It's scheduled to play Sunday.

"I'm just really honored to be here," Rosales said of his second time at the festival. "I don't know what to say — I'm just very excited for our film to be seen by many other directors, actors and, of course, the locals here."

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