James Corden delays start of play to watch England’s penalty shootout with audience | Ents & Arts News

James Corden delayed the start of his West End stage show on Saturday evening to watch the penalty shootout between England and Switzerland with his audience.

The 45-year-old actor and football fan brought an iPad out onto the Old Vic stage, where he is currently starring in new political play The Constituent.

With the score 1-1 after extra-time, England beat the Swiss 5-3 on penalties in Dusseldorf, Germany, securing Gareth Southgate’s team a place in the semi-finals of Euro 2024.

Audience member Carla Feltham, 37, filmed the moment, which showed the Gavin And Stacey star propping the iPad up on a table at the front of the stage for the audience and his co-star to see and narrating the action.

The play, which also stars Anna Maxwell Martin, had been due to start at 7.30pm, the same time as the penalties were taking place.

In the video, Corden could be heard telling the audience that England was one ahead, saying: „If we score this, we’re through. If we score this, we’re through, and then a very serious, intense, political play“.

The crowd laughed, then Corden shouted: „Come on Trent.“

The auditorium erupted with cheers after Trent Alexander-Arnold scored the fifth spot-kick to send England through.

TV Presenter and comedian James Corden arrives to the premiere of a Netflix documentary called 'Beckham' in London, Britain October 3, 2023. REUTERS/Maja Smiejkowska
Pic: Reuters

Ms Feltham, a customer service worker from Bristol, said: „It was incredible watching the penalties with the cast and the atmosphere was amazing.

„It’s not every day something like that happens and the entire audience loved it.

„It was amazing that England got through. I heard that a few shows in London struggled with audience members trying to look at their phones for the score so this was perfect and avoided that.“

She confirmed that the play started around 10 or 15 minutes late, „but no one at all minded“.

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Corden, who spent eight years hosting US hit chat show The Late Late Show, has said that despite enjoying the role he felt „compelled“ to return to the UK.

He also said the American TV format of frequent advert breaks interrupting the show’s flow was his „one frustration“.

He’ll be back on UK screens for a Gavin And Stacey special this Christmas.

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