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TAKERS Premiere

By Brian Lynch

A chorus of women yelling “Lick your lips! Lick your lips!” would seem out of place at – well, any other event – but the Sunday premiere of the new film “Takers”, coming to theaters on August 27th, brought a dedicated, albeit oddly focused, throng of attendees out of the woodwork. The event, which was hosted by local hip-hop/R&B radio station Power 99, featured a personal appearance and pre-film introduction by multi-platinum selling rap artist T.I.

T.I. (whose real name is Clifford Harris) brought emotions to a fevered pitch with his arrival, and posed for pictures before being brought inside the theater. Women clamored for his attention, all in spite of his recent marriage to longtime girlfriend Tameka Cottle; cries of adulation, support, and “Lick your lips!” punctuated the evening air. Two small boys were darting about, hoping to catch a glimpse of their idol. One of them thought quickly, produced a cell-phone, and snapped a more permanent image – to compliment the T.I. posters they carried.

It was a short, glimmering touch of star power that graced 2nd and Sansom’s Ritz East theater Sunday night; one can only hope for more.

Photos by Aileen Bannon: abannon@philly2philly.com