Town rock star's big-screen debut

A ROCK superstar is tipping a new access-all-areas film about his band to be a hit with fans across the world.

Hartlepool-born guitarist Janick Gers – who stars with legendary heavy metal band Iron Maiden – spoke to the Mail ahead of the UK premiere of the award winning Iron Maiden: Flight 666.

It is the first film to be released about the iconic rock band, who are currently in London for this evening's screening at the Kensington Odeon.

The film was shot as the band embarked upon the first leg of their legendary Somewhere Back in Time world tour last year on board their plane Ed Force One.

The tour, which is considered to be the most ambitious and adventurous tour in rock history, took them 50,000 miles around the world playing 23 concerts in five continents in just 45 days.

Flight 666 gives an access-all-areas close up at what happened on and off stage and contains spectacular live footage of the band in action.

Guitarist Janick, 52, said: "It was a fantastic experience to be able to fly around the world in our own plane and it enabled us to reach countries we have never been to before.

"The film is about us as a band, how we interact with the fans, and it also gives fans an idea of how a tour of this scale is put together.

"I'm sure it will be a huge hit with fans from across the world, I certainly enjoyed it. The fans are very important to us and they do feature heavily in the film. We don't get much radio play so touring is a huge part of what we do and the film features live songs from every country we played in."

The married dad-of-two added: "I had no interest in being a film star, I'm happiest when I am playing my guitar, but it was a great experience to be involved in.

"This was a once in a lifetime tour and I'm glad we captured it on film."

Iron Maiden's manager, Rod Smallwood, said: "This film is a testament to an extraordinary tour and to our incredible fans all over the world.

"Seeing it on the big screen, in digital, will make you feel like you were there on that spectacular journey."

The feature length rock-mentary is to be shown at Hartlepool's Vue cinema, tomorrow at 7pm as part of Maiden Day – a global release on over 400 screens in 35 countries.