Showing posts with label Max von Sydow. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Max von Sydow. Show all posts

Thursday, May 2, 2013

TCM Classic Film Festival Day #5 Recap

The last day of the TCM Classic Film Festival was bittersweet for several reasons as you'll see below.

I went to the Cinerama Dome to attend a screening of It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World (1963).

And I took the obligatory photo of the Honeycomb ceiling.

Press Photo
Tom Brown of TCM hosted and the special guests included actors Mickey Rooney and Marvin Kaplan, actress Barrie Chase and Director Stanley Kramer's widow actress Karen Sharpe Kramer. Carl Reiner couldn't make it and Jonathan Winters had recently passed away. They screened a short tribute to Jonathan Winters and left an open seat for him. It was very sad not to have him there.

At one point during the screening, I went to the bathroom and I saw Mickey Rooney on his way out! Thank you to my weak bladder because I had several run ins with classic film stars and TCM staffers (especially Ben Mankiewicz who I saw about a dozen times) on my way to and from bathrooms. The stars are well protected though and Mickey had staff members nearby who were shielding him from some curious fans. I was just happy to see him up close again.

I plan to do a more thorough post on the talk that happened before the screening!

One of the sad things about the festival is that in order to attend everything you have planned to attend and also eat food in between screenings, you have to leave a few screenings early. I left this film during the intermission to grab a late lunch and to head over to the Grauman's Chinese in time to see Three Days of the Condor (1975).

Press Photo
I really love Three Days of the Condor (1975). I had seen it for the first time shortly before the festival and was happy to see it again. I have to say, of all the films I saw at the festival, I kinda regret going to this one. I regret leaving in the middle of It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World (1963) to come see a film I had seen recently. When Robert Osborne interviewed Max von Sydow before the screening, they barely even talked about the movie! It's not even worth it for me to do a separate post about it. Considering I had seen Max von Sydow the day before and the film wasn't brought up then either, I didn't see much value in leaving the Cinerama Dome screening to attend this one. Although it was still wonderful to see the film on the big screen and Max von Sydow and his wife stayed to watch it with us for a bit which was nice too.

I ended up leaving Three Days of the Condor just after one of my favorite scenes and before the film ended to get in line for The General (1926). The thing about watching two films back to back in the same theater is that by the time you get out of the first one, a line has already formed for the next one. They won't let you stay in the theater so you have to get into the new line. I really wanted to see The General and knew a lot of people seeing Three Days of the Condor were going to get back in line for The General so I hightailed it out of there early and got in line. 

Laura of Laura's Miscellaneous Musings had written the seating capacity of each of the theaters. I copied her notes and this was incredibly useful. When you are in line, they give you a number and if you know the theater's seating capacity then you know how good your chance is of getting in. Grauman's Chinese seats 1,100 so I know that being #106 that I had the best chance of getting in. By the way, there are two lines. One for Spotlight and VIP passes. They go first. Then Media and the other passes get in. If you have a Matinee or Palace pass or no pass at all and it's after 6 PM, you have to wait in a standby line and if there are any leftover seats then you can get in for $20 (or $10 if you have a student ID). Carlos had a Matinee Pass and had his student ID and cash on hand and got into several night time screenings this way.

The General (1926) was the grand finale of the festival. Robert Osborne came out to introduce it. He read from notes which he doesn't normally do but did in this case so that he wouldn't forget anything. He thanked the sponsors, especially Porsche because he got to ride around in one during the festival (lucky!) and he also thanked all the TCM staff members who helped make the festival happen. Osborne  announced that there will be a TCM Classic Film Festival in 2014. In fact, April 14, 2014 will be TCM's 20th anniversary so the festival will be tied into that. He also announced that December 3rd, 2013 is the official starting date for the TCM Cruise which will be on the Disney Magic. Osborne said that TCM is very particular about which ships they'll host their cruise on and Conde Nast has ranked Disney Magic as the #1 cruise ship in the world.

Then came some sad news. This screening was the penultimate one before the TCL Chinese Theatre (Grauman's Chinese) converts to IMAX. That means they will rip out all that seating, put in stadium seating and an IMAX screen. They will be closed from now until the summer for renovations. There will be fewer seats and who knows what this will mean for the future.

Osborne told us to look around the theatre after the screening. To take a really good look around because it will be the last time we will see it this way. We all booed and he asked us not to throw anything at him. (LOL). Osborne said that he's been told that they will do a great job and TCM has faith in them. It was nice of him to say that but no one really knows how things will turn out. The way we saw the theatre that night was the same way it had been since 1926! They had held the Academy Awards there and Casablanca (1944) won for Best Picture in that theatre.

The 25 minute Buster Keaton short One Week (1920) was screened before The General as an added bonus which was really great. The Alloy Orchestra played music to both films and it was just a wonderful experience. Seeing Buster Keaton and his hilarious antics on such a gigantic screen, in a beautiful historic theatre that had been that way since the film was released and to be with a thousand other appreciative fans was an experience that just blew me away.

Take a look at the picture above. After the film ended and the Alloy Orchestra took a bow to a standing ovation, we all took Robert Osborne's advice and took a good look at the theatre. We snapped pictures and marveled at the theatre's beauty knowing that we were some of the last people to see it that way. It was a really bittersweet moment.

After the screening, I headed over to Club TCM for the Opening Night Party. It was quite chaotic. There were so many people there and I felt a bit suffocated. Also, they turned me away at one entrance but let me in at another. I ended up hanging out with Carlos and a few others at the Roosevelt Hotel pool which was open to everyone and a lot less crowded. I said my goodbyes to many of the wonderful classic film bloggers I've known for years but got to meet for the first time at the festival. It was sad but I was happy to have had this experience. It's one I will never forget.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

TCM Classic Film Festival Day #4 Recap

Saturday was the third official day of the festival but my fourth day of TCM Classic Film Festival festivities. It started off with a bit of a disappointment. We got there a bit late to check-in to the Jane Fonda Handprint Footprint Ceremony at the Grauman's Chinese Theatre. I didn't realize that I had to RSVP as a member of the press to attend so I couldn't get press access. Carlos and I ended up going across the street and watched a bit of it from afar. A lot of celebs were there. Eva Longoria, Jim Carrey, Maria Shriver, Jane's son Troy Garrity, Lily Tomlin and Jane's brother Peter Fonda. I didn't really care about any of them except for Jane and Peter Fonda to be honest. Robert Osborne introduced and mentioned that Jane Fonda's hand and footprints would be placed next to her father Henry Fonda's hand and footprints. Later Jane thanked TCM for all that they do for classic films and also recalled that her father told her not to let anyone in Hollywood walk all over her and now they will both have everyone in Hollywood walking all over them. From what I heard later, Jane Fonda did a peace sign with one hand when she did her handprints. The rest of the day was so incredibly amazing that not being close enough to the ceremony didn't end up mattering at all.

After seeing the Handprint Footprint ceremony from afar, I headed to the Chinese Multiplex next door for my first movie of the day. The festival had a great power station at the Multiplex. It was sponsored by Delta Airlines and at the station you could plug in your cell phone, laptop or any other electronic device in order to charge up. It was a fantastic service and one I wish were available at the other locations of the festival. While I was charging up my iPhone, I got a chance to speak to speak to TCM's executive producer Tom Brown. He was waiting to go pick up Burt Reynolds for an event.

I met with Laura of Laura's Miscelleanous Musings afterwards and we got in line for The Lady Vanishes (1938). I had never seen the film before and I was excited to see Norman Lloyd again. Carlos also attended and at one point, he got to shake hands with Robert Osborne. LUCKY!

The screening of The Lady Vanishes (1938) was hosted by Leonard Maltin and special guest Norman Lloyd got two standing ovations. For being 98 years old, Norman Lloyd is in really good shape. He's very mobile, Maltin told us that he plays tennis every day and his mind is very sharp. A lot of other guests needed help getting to the stage and back but Norman Lloyd needed no assistance. He was incredibly funny and charming. I will be writing a more in depth post in the future and I hope to include a little of the video I shot of the interview. And as an added bonus, Norman Lloyd watched the film with us and actor Marvin Kaplan was there to watch the film too!

After The Lady Vanishes (1938) screening, Carlos and I headed to Club TCM at the Roosevelt Hotel and attended the Conversation with Max von Sydow event which was also hosted by Leonard Maltin. Max von Sydow was fashionably late and the event lasted just under an hour. At the beginning of the event, the announcer told the audience that there would be no pictures and no autographing after the interview per Max's request. I think this should be the case for all these Club TCM interviews. I overheard someone say that the Conversation with Tippi Hedren event had gotten out of control. People started pushing and shoving to get an autograph or picture. Not cool, people! It is a privilege to see these stars, not a right.

Max von Sydow's interview was great. I plan to do an in depth post on it later. We were disappointed they didn't discuss Three Days of the Condor (1975). It was really fantastic to see Max von Sydow so up close (we were in the second row!). And to top it all off, Carlos and I got to shake hands with Leonard Maltin afterwards.

Afterwards, I went to the Club TCM lounge and stumbled upon Ann Blyth being interviewed by Robert Osborne for a TCM special. I cried. These taped interviews for TCM promos are not scheduled or announced so if you catch one it is just an added bonus.

Ann Blyth is so beautiful. I overheard that the segment will be used for an Ann Blyth Summer Under the Stars day. I'm not in the background of the interview because I was crying so I hid away from the camera. I didn't take notes on this so I won't be doing a post. I was too emotional anyways because Ann Blyth was at the top of my list of classic film stars I wanted to see at the festival. She is just so stunningly beautiful and that perfect smile of hers still dazzles to this day. Wow. She was super sweet too and would pose for pictures. Robert Osborne was totally flirting with her and kept telling her that she found the fountain of youth because she still looks so good. She's 88 years old, has 5 children, 10 grandchildren and 1 great grandchild on the way. I loved the fact that she said she exercises with a Bosu ball and does weight lifting because I do the same.

I didn't think this day could get any better but it did. After the Ann Blyth taping, we went to go play a trivia game called "What's the Score?" with Alex Trebek at Club TCM. Our team "Musical Chairs" came in 4th place. On my team was Karen from Shadows and Satin. I have no ear for music so I was pretty terrible at the trivia but everyone else on my team was great. We lost the 4 way tie-breaker. It was so much fun to do a trivia game with Alex Trebek. I am a huge Jeopardy! fan and have always dreamed of being on the show but I'm not very good at quick trivia. So if this is the closest I'll ever come to Jeopardy! then I'm okay with that. Alex Trebek was charming and a lot of fun. He was great with the audience and we just had a blast. This same game had been played on the last TCM Cruise and Trebek mentioned the cruise several times too.

TCM Photo

Darnell, Dan, myself and Carlos at the trivia game.

Afterwards, Laura of Laura's Miscellaneous Musings and Aurora of Once Upon a Screen... and I left to go wait in line for Mildred Pierce (1945) screening at the Grauman's Egyptian. We were pretty early in line. Ann Blyth was interviewed for 15 minutes by Robert Osborne. There were a couple standing ovations and lots of clapping. It was a very appreciative audience and great screening. A more in depth post to come.

Carlos got into a screening of Le Mans (1975) with special guests Chad McQueen (Steve McQueen's son) and two race car drivers Vic Elford and Derek Bell.

I loved these two pictures I took of Norman Lloyd and Max von Sydow putting their hands up in appreciation of the standing ovations they received!

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