London opens its Olympic Games with a star-studded audience and royalty: Photos

London opens its Olympic Games with a star-studded audience and royalty: Photos

London : United Kingdom | Jul 28, 2012 at 1:02 AM PDT
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Olympics 2012 opening ceremony

London is the city's third time as Olympic host, and as Britain's Queen Elizabeth II pointed out Friday, it also is a milestone for her family.

Among the 60,000 spectators at Olympic Stadium there will be royals, including Queen Elizabeth II, who will open the Games, along with Prince William and his wife, Kate, and Prince Harry well as British Prime Minister David Cameron and London mayor Boris Johnson.

The ceremony itself included Muhammad Ali, Paul McCartney and David Beckham -- who drove the Olympic flame down the Thames in a speedboat.

Former world heavyweight champion and 1960 Rome Olympic gold medalist Muhammad Ali was cheered when he appeared briefly with his wife, Lonnie, before the Olympic flag was unfurled.

The first Hollywood ,who showed up was Kenneth Branagh, dressed in a top hat, recited a part of William Shakespeare's The Tempest. "Be not afear'd," one of his lines said. "The isle is full of noises."

Actor Hugh Bonneville, who plays aristocrat Lord Grantham in the costume drama "Downton Abbey," tweeted a picture of his fellow cast-members arriving at the stadium.

Actor Rowan Atkinson as Mr. Bean provided laughs, shown dreaming that he was appearing in Chariots of Fire, the inspiring story of a Scotsman and an Englishman at the 1924 Paris Games.

British movie star Orlando Bloom stopped to take pictures with British soldiers and fans outside the stadium.

The U.S. was represented by first lady Michelle Obama, and Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney .

Oscar-winning director Danny Boyle ,who turned the stadium into a giant juke box, with a nonstop rock and pop homage to cool Britannia that ensured the show never caught its breath . A 27 million pound ($42 million) spectacular titled "Isles of Wonder," drew rave reviews from live and television spectators.

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Among the 60000 spectators at Olympic Stadium will be Queen Elizabeth II _ who as British head of state will officially open the games _ along with royals including Prince William and his wife Kate, and Prince Harry.
nazish7 is based in Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand, and is a Stringer on Allvoices.
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