November 7, 2003

Screenings for the In Crowd

When those early ciné clubs debuted in Paris about a hundred years ago, crowds of the fashionable would gather in cafes to watch series of 8 minute films. It was all very social, you see -- the drinking, the chatting and then the cinema. "Have we really come so far from there?" is what Cinecultist wonders while reading the following article in the New York Observer by Jake Brooks about the elite screenings publicists like Peggy Siegal organize to generate buzz among the A-listers for their pictures to fill the screener DVD void. Mostly though, these screenings seem like the usual who's who parties, more about checking out who's in the (fancy/trendy) room than actually watching the movie.

For instance, in this quote author Gay Talese who attended a screening of the Human Stain with his wife, seems more excited about the drinks and the Sir Anthony Hopkins sighting in the audience than the Philip Roth adaptation on the screen (which CC guesses is sorta understandable considering the reviews we've read of HS):

"The conversation—with people who are sitting in front of you, or behind you, or in the aisles on the straight-back chair because they were too late—is pleasant," Mr. Talese recalled. "So even if the film isn’t a show worth seeing, the show itself, the atmosphere, the ambiance, made it worthwhile. Then you wind up as I did, with a Bombay gin martini, straight up with a twist, looking through the reflections of the simmering, shimmering, stupefying martini, and seeing the dazzling Mr. Anthony Hopkins," who showed up for the dinner at Arabelle.

All Cinecultist has to say about this business-as-usual in the moviemaking industry is -- where's our damn invite Peggy? CC's all buzz.
[Thanks Fiona So Much Modern Time for the linky link!]

Posted by karen at November 7, 2003 8:01 AM