x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Student who upstaged Colin Firth is identified

21-year-old Emirati from Zayed University fainted on stage as star of The King's Speech was giving talk at Diff.

She managed to do the near-impossible: steal the show from the screen heartthrob Colin Firth.

When Eman al Ameeri collapsed on stage, she triggered a collective gasp from an audience of 400 who had gathered to hear a talk from the star of The King's Speech.

Indeed, even Firth was stopped dead in his tracks, saying: "Is it right to carry on? I mean, it seems a bit strange, doesn't it, before we know she's OK."

He asked after her wellbeing several times during the "In Conversation With Colin Firth" on Monday, hosted by Variety magazine.

The identity of the young student volunteer had been a mystery, but yesterday Miss al Ameeri admitted it was she who had fainted and fallen during the event, and said: "I am so embarrassed."

The 21-year-old Emirati, who is studying at Zayed University, added: "I did not even realise he was famous. I have never seen any of his films and had never heard of him before."

The student was standing on the steps at the bottom of the stage when she passed out and collapsed just 10 minutes into the 90-minute event, causing a loud thud as she fell.

She came round several minutes later, was helped out of an emergency exit door, was taken home, and the talk continued.

tyaqoob@thenational.ae