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Screen Legends

Originally Posted: October 24, 2007

Nicole B. Brewer

The International film community invaded the Hamptons this past weekend bringing over 100 films to the masses. There were parties all over but none as interesting as the event at Studio 77.

David Zayas, Robin Bronk, and Michael Wudyka at the Studio 77 party. Photo by Kurt

Michael Wudyka of The Enclave Inn and Mitchell Kriegman of Wainscott Studios hosted a party with the Creative Coalition that was a blast at their LTV Studio in Wainscott. The space, a vast open soundstage perfect for any feature film, was showcased in high style with styling by the over the top Jennifer Houser. Christopher Robbins and his team from Robbins Wolfe Eventuers stole the show with their delicious offerings including a trio of soups to start and desserts to end that were truly scrumptious. Guests enjoyed delicious champagne from Palmes d'Or as they danced the night away to the sounds of AGES Events DJ Entertainment.

The guest list was a mix of politicos, actors, directors, producers, and writers involved with films at the festival. Notable names on the guest list included NYS Assemblyman Fred Thiele, Mary Ellen Winston, Count Alexandre and Countess Lu Ann De Lessepes, Caroline Lieberman, Patricia Watt, Giancarlo Esposito, Laura and David Gamble, Jane Babcook, Jennifer Freibly, Ellen Cea, Dr. Ancy Vertier, David Zayas, Minerva Selza, Randy Colhan, Lauren Wingate, Daryl M. Smith, Armani Martin, and Benedict Hadley.

Robin Bronk of the Creative Coalition welcomed the guests and led the formal dialogue portion of the evening. The topics were politically based - the hottest being the race for the Presidency. Ideas shot back and forth between the seated guests and the panel members and then it was back to dancing and dessert.

Throughout the evening the Hamptons.com Main Street Series team of Gina Glickman and Taylor Florio chatted with filmmakers and film buffs alike. (Check out our Live View section for all the interviews.)

NYS Assemblyman Fred Thiele and Gina Glickman at the Studio 77 party. Photo
by Kurt Leggard

Talking about the films, lets start with the shorts. When it came to the short film the "Gray Matter" selections were quite a mixed bag with Bryan Wizeman's "Film Makes Us Happy" leading the emotional charge. The moving 12-minute selection depicted a husband and wife arguing over his passion for filmmaking and her desire for him to have a "real' job. Anyone in a relationship can relate to this struggle between security and following your dreams. In the end Sabina Burdzovic, the Director's wife, and their young daughter came to view the film and answer questions during the Q & A following the shorts. He finally got a break and has a "real job" and she seems content, at least for now. The other selections were strange, to say the least, and left audience members wondering the point as it was truly unclear even after you had read the program.

The Spotlight films were another mixed bag - "August Rush" by Kirsten Sheridan was the hot film for the college and high school crowd and starred Keri Russell and Jonathan Rhys Meyers. Bob Balaban's "Bernard and Doris" starring Susan Sarandon as the late Doris Duke and Ralph Fiennes as her butler was hailed as "Oscar Worthy" by viewers. Phil Donahue joined with Ellen Spiro to give a voice to those at Walter Reed Medical Center in "Body of War" that was riveting. "Grey Gardens: From East Hampton to Broadway" by Albert Maysles tells the story of how his documentary about two spinsters from East Hampton went from the screen to the Broadway stage.

Lauren Bacall at the screening of "The Walker" in East Hampton. Photo by Patrick

The masses huddled together waiting to get in the theater to see Paul Schrader's "The Walker" were treated to a glimpse of Old Hollywood glamour in the form of Lauren Bacall. She alighted from the backseat of a Rolls Royce and waved to her cheering fans - now this was a premiere, this was a movie star. After graciously posing for photos and signing autographs with a smile the screen legend stopped by the concession stand for popcorn and entered the theater with the other late arrivals. In her seat she waved and smiled and finished half the popcorn before the film began and twice stood to let someone into her row.

After the film - which also starred Woody Harrelson, Kristen Scott Thomas, Lily Tomlin, Willem Dafoe, and Ned Beatty - Bacall entertained questions from the audience who were mixed on the film. Some left as she approached the microphone and the applause was polite, hardly the rousing accolade one would have expected. She admitted that while she liked the film and her role, as well as her time spent in London on location, she felt she was "not well lit". Can't be sure but it sounds like she was a bit surprised at the film, and not in a favorable way.

At times like this, when there are Independent film folks everywhere it seems that everyone's a critic and even a legend can't get a break when she's in the room.

Interior designers Tony Ingrao and Randy Kemper hosted the opening exhibition of Italian artist Marco Perego's, "DEVOLUTION," a powerful ensemble of new paintings and sculptures at the Ingrao Gallery a few weeks back in NYC.

The evening was chic, trendy, and filled with closed friends including Theodora Richards, Alexandra Richards, Lapo Elkam, Zani Gugelmann, Alexis Bryan, Petra Nemcova, Karolina Kurkova, Gemma Ward, Margherita Missoni, Jennifer Rose, Elizabeth Loomis, Nicole Neuhaus, Gualtiero Giori, Gian Andrea Ferrajoli, John A. Vizzone, Shorty, art collectors, and continuous admirers Dolce & Gabbana who own numerous pieces of Marco Perego's eclectic work.

Karolina Kurcova, Tony Ingrao, and Marco Perego at the Ingrao Gallery. Photo by

Special guests also included Elise Lelon, hair stylist Julien Farel , attorney and NY Times bestselling author Mark W. Smith, event planner Alison Minton, Andrew Luke Barile and Melysa Diament-Remo of Station Studios NYC, event planner Harriette Rose Katz, Michelle Gerber Klein, event décor designer DeJuan Stroud, Campion and Tatiana Platt, Virginia Pitman of Lenox Hill Neighborhood House, Fred and Vicki Modell of the Jeffrey Modell Foundation, Elaine Sargent, Harry Slatkin, who was honored at the Elton John Aids Foundation benefit, and Michael and Irena Sinensky.

In his first American exhibition of his work, Perego uses his signature pop style to explore his notions of contemporary human interaction. The concept of "Devolution" is taken up by Perego to describe 'reverse-evolution,' or society's regression back in time, to the era of Adam and Eve. "I see more and more people today closing themselves within this technological bubble via cell phones, blackberries, iPods, computers; they have individual freedom, but as a whole society loses," he says from his New York studio.

A centerpiece of the exhibition is a four-part mural entitled "Devolution" - where giant strands of candy-colored spheres representing molecules of DNA float around with oversized children's toys and gumball machines. Amongst this "Neverland" of innocent and vibrant beauty, Perego has embedded ghost-like sculls. Rendered more realistically, these apparitions are sharp reminders of the regression and emptiness that we hold in our lives as we enter a world where superficial communication is the norm. Perego's motifs are drawn from everyday culture and his references are derived from a whole host of artists from Caravaggio to Damien Hirst. By representing these images in a perfected almost industrial painting style, Perego desensitizes us, taking us to a dream world that doesn't exist, thereby simulating the impersonal nature of our contemporary social interactions. The exhibition will also include Perego's monumental "Adam, Eve, and me," - a nine-foot iPod that carries a picture of the artist and the words "against the flow."

Nicole, an award-winning journalist, is Executive Editor & Publisher of Hamptons.com where she focuses on celebrity interviews, fine living and design, social events, fashion and beauty. She lives on the North Fork with her husband, their two daughters, and Bernese Mountain dog, Cooper. www.hamptons.com HamptonsOnline NicoleBBrewer NicoleBBrewer NicoleBBrewer

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