Quotables: A Conversation With Alan Alda

Alan Alda at the 17th Annual Hamptons International FIlm Festival. Photo: Lisa Wagner/Splash News

Alan Alda is all smiles at the 17th Annual Hamptons International Film Festival.
Photo: Lisa Wagner/BlogHamptons/Splash News

Alan Alda was one of the illustrious guests to grace the Hamptons International Film Festival this year and participate in their popular interview series, "A Conversation With..." Here are a few of the highlights of that conversation as Mr. Alda reflected on his life and career.

Alan Alda on his first experience in front of a live audience...at the age of 9 : “I remember that feeling of power of being able to turn the laughs off and on, to sort of manipulate the audience. Maybe it was inevitable that I would be in show business, but it was also what I really wanted to do. I loved it.”

Alan Alda on working with Woody Allen : "I've made three movies with him, and you and I have said more today than he did."

Alan Alda on his greatest accomplishment : “Being married to my wife for 52 years.”

And our personal favorite...Alan Alda on kissing : Reflecting back on all of his leading ladies, including Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda and Mia Farrow, interviewer Judy Licht asked which of them was the better kisser. Mr. Alda took little pause before he quipped: "I was."

Hamptons Film Fest Highlight: “Up In The Air”

Anna Kendrick Attends the 17th Annual Hamptons International Film Festival“Up In The Air”
Directed by: Jason Reitman

2009 | 108 min | Feature Narrative

Cast & Credits
Producer: Ivan Reitman, Jason Reitman, Daniel Dubiecki, Jeffrey Clifford
Screenwriter: Jason Reitman and Sheldon Turner
Cast: George Clooney, Vera Farmiga, Anna Kendrick

Anna Kendrick was on hand at the 17th Annual Hamptons International Film Festival for the screening of her new film, “Up In The Air.” From Jason Reitman, the Oscar nominated director of “Juno,” comes this dramatic comedy starring Oscar winner George Clooney as Ryan Bingham, a corporate downsizing expert whose cherished life on the road is threatened just as he is on the cusp of reaching ten million frequent flyer miles and after he’s met the frequent-traveler woman of his dreams.

A thoroughly relevant, well-paced, and immensely entertaining film, "Up in the Air" is one of BlogHamptons top picks from this year's festival. Between Clooney's brilliant delivery and a rich story that allows Vera Farmiga to shine, this is one film we expect to receive a lot of Oscar buzz!

Annika Peterson Rides Onto The Red Carpet

Annika Peterson and Joel Goldberg share some red carpet fun.

On Sunday night, 12 year-old Joel Goldberg and his 13 year-old friend Ryan decided to check out some of the celebrity action happening at the Hamptons International Film Festival. The two boys strapped on their helmets and rode their bikes over to Guild Hall in East Hampton where there was a bright red carpet and a gaggle of press waiting for some of this year's hottest talent.

Joel and Ryan positioned themselves on the sidewalk and watched as independent film makers and celebrated breakthrough performers made their way down the red carpet. I'm sure it was fun to watch to the flashes firing and the young starlets posing in their backless dresses, but let's face it; these kids weren't hoping to catch a glimpse of an up and coming Scandinavian actor or the producer of a narrative documentary. They wanted star action! Where were the Pierce Brosnan's, Sharon Stone's and Alec Baldwin's?

HIFF Award Winner: “Big River Man”

“Big River Man”
2009 Wouter Barendrecht Award for Pioneering Vision
Directed by: John Maringouin

2009 | 100 min | Feature Documentary

Cast & Credits
Producer: Molly Lynch, Maria Florio, Kevin Ragsdale
Cinematographer: John Maringouin
Music: Rich Ragsdale
Cast: Martin Strel, Borut Strel, Matthew Mohlke

“Big River Man” is the adventure of a lifetime. Overweight 53 year-old Martin Strel appears to be far from the incarnation of good health, yet in his current state he has achieved records for the world's longest consecutive swims, including the entirety of the Yangtze and Danube rivers. Documentarian John Maringouin intrepidly followed Strel as he embarked on a journey to complete the world's longest ever swim: the Amazon River. Strel and his team of trainers and guides never could have anticipated the life-altering experiences that were ahead of them along the wild and ancient stretch of water. This film captures their unbelievable story.

Director John Maringouin has made a career out of documenting the bizarre and the extreme. His first film was the uncomfortably intimate documentary Running Stumbled, in which he tracked down his father, Johnny Roe, Jr., whom prior to the shoot he hadn't seen for three decades.

Big River Man - Trailer from KNR Productions on Vimeo.

HIFF Award Winner: “Waking Sleeping Beauty”

“Waking Sleeping Beauty”
2009 Hamptons Film Fest Audience Award Winner for Best Documentary
Directed by: Don Hahn
2009 | 86 min | Feature Documentary

Cast & Credits
Writer: Patrick Pacheco
Producers: Peter Schneider, Don Hahn
Editor: Ellen Keneshea
Music: Chris Bacon
Cast: Roy Disney, Jeffrey Katzenberg, Glen Keane, Howard Ashman

By the mid-1980s, the once mighty Disney Animation Studios was in a slump. Despite a flock of eager and talented young animators, innovation at the studio was held at bay by an old guard of conservative original-era executives. By the end of 1990s, however, Disney had produced a string of bona fide hits from Who Framed Roger Rabbit? to The Lion King. What can account for this turnaround? Director Don Hahn's juicy behind-the-scenes tell-all of this transitional period is an encyclopedia of first-hand footage, drawings, and interviews detailing all the in-fights and ego-trips, unequivocal failures and soaring successes, tragic lows and elating highs of the Disney renaissance.

Congratulations to 2009 Festival Award Winners!

Felix van Groeningen accepts his third award at Guild Hall for his film, The Misfortunates.

Felix van Groeningen accepts his third award at Guild Hall for his film, “The Misfortunates.”

The films and the talent presented at this year's festival were nothing short of inspiring so, we'd like to take this opportunity to extend our thanks to Hamptons Film Festival Executive Director Karen Arikian, Director of Programming David Nugent, and Chairman Stuart Suna, as well as Lina Plath and Clare Anne Darragh of Frank PR, for making this year's festival such a resounding success.

It truly takes a village to pull off a five-day event like the Hamptons International Film Festival and we'd be remiss if we didn't recognize and thank the countless organizers, sponsors, board members, local businesses and volunteers who made this year's festival possible. From the local residents who welcomed visitors from around the globe, to the friendly officers who helped herds of movies goers cross the street, it was a community effort that was spotlighted on an international stage. Everyone involved should be proud of the way the Hamptons were presented.

As we prepare our huge HIFF Photo Gallery and write-ups, we hope you'll take note of all of this year's award winners and participants. We'd also like to give a special congratulations to Felix van Groeningen (pictured above) whose film “The Misfortunates” won not one but three awards, including the Golden Starfish Award for Best Narrative Feature.

All of this year's film makers and actors deserve a standing ovation!

Golden Starfish Award for Best Narrative Feature:
“The Misfortunates,” directed by Felix van Groeningen

Special Jury Award for Outstanding Achievement by an Actor:
“Paprika Steen,” in Applause

Golden Starfish Award for Best Documentary:
“Long Distance Love,” directed by Magnus Gertten and Elin Jonsson

Special Jury Award
“Mugabe and the White African,” Lucy Bailey & Andrew Thompson

Golden Starfish Award for Best Short:
“Dust Kid,” directed by Jung Yumi

Best Film of Conflict & Resolution:
“Rabbit a la Berlin,” directed by Bartek Konopka

Audience Award for Best Narrative Film:
“The Young Victoria,” directed by Jean-Marc Vallee

Audience Award for Best Documentary:
“Waking Sleeping Beauty,” directed by Don Hahn

Audience Award for Best Short:
“This is Her,” directed by Katie Wolfe

Zicherman Foundation Award for Best Screenplay:
Felix van Groeningen for “The Misfortunates”

Kodak Award for Best Cinematography:
Ruben Impens for “The Misfortunates”

Kanbar Indie Award:
Antonio Campos for “My Adventures in Ladies’ Undergarments”

Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Prize:
“Agora,” directed by Alejandro Amenabar

Roc Skincare Gold Standard in Filmmaking Award for a Feature Female Director:
Cheryl Hines for “Serious Moonlight”

Wouter Barendrecht Award for Pioneering Vision
“Big River Man,” John Maringouin

Friday Highlights For Hamptons Film Fest

Friday Highlights: Hamptons International Film Festival

11:00AM UA East Hampton Theater 6

Abbie Cancelled
Short Films
Short Narrative, 2009, 16 min
Directed by: Jessica Burstein and Robbie Norris

Plays In: New York Women in Film and Television Short Film Program
When their mutual friend cancels at the last minute, two very different couples are forced to endure a cringingly awkward dinner party involving broken chairs, media job-hunting and recreational huffing.

6:00PM Guild Hall

The Sloan Science In Film Tribute: Celebrating Ten Years Of Innovative Films at The Hamptons International Film Festival
Program, 75 min

To celebrate its ten-year partnership with Sloan and the tenth edition of this award, on Friday, October 9th, the Festival will hold the Sloan Science In Film Tribute, taking place at Guild Hall and hosted by Bob Balaban. This special evening will be a celebration of the feature films that have received Sloan recognition at the Hamptons Film Festival over the past 10 years. Our onstage event will include a number of special speaking guests, including Alan Alda, Amy Redford, and past Sloan Prize Winners Marc Abraham (FLASH OF GENIUS), Su Rynard (KARDIA) and Maggie Greenwald (SONGCATCHER), among others

6:15PM UA East Hampton Theater 5

Feature Narrative, 2009, 90 min
Directed by: Adam Salky
Interests: Coming of Age, Gay Interest

In this Sundance hit, uptight A-student Alexa (Emmy Rossum) and her best friend Ben (Ashley Springer) befriend popular jock Johnny (Zach Gilford), after which their relationships take on surprising new dimensions. Featuring terrific support from Ana Gasteyer, Sandra Bernhard, Alan Cumming and Rooney Mara, DARE is that rare "teen movie" with a provocative twist.

8:15PM UA East Hampton Theater 6

Short Films
Short Narrative, 2008, 24 min
Directed by: Jospeh Gordon-Levitt
Plays In: Golden Starfish Awards Short Films in Competition
Interests: Mystery-Suspense-Thriller

Joseph Gordon-Levitt's directorial debut is based on a short story by novelist Elmore Leonard. With large sums of money on the line, a vixen-ish declining rock star is being investigated for arson. Read More

9:15PM UA East Hampton Theater 5

The Agony and the Ecstasy of Phil Spector
World Cinema
Feature Documentary, 2008, 102 min
Directed by: Vikram Jayanti
Interests: Art & Artists, Biography, Documentary, Experimental, Music Films

Phil Spector is a pioneer of American music, a legendary producer to John Lennon and Tina Turner, and, as of April 13th 2009, a convicted murderer. Director Vikram Jayanti overlays unprecedented personal interviews with harrowing court footage and original music recordings to create a dizzying portrait of genius and insanity, and a profound insight into a notorious subject.

9:30PM UA Southampton

Serious Moonlight
World Cinema
Feature Narrative, 2009, 84 min
Interests: Comedy

After she arrives at her country home for a romantic weekend getaway, things don't go exactly as planned for high-powered Manhattan lawyer Louise (Meg Ryan). First, her husband of 13 years, Ian (Timothy Hutton), tells her that he's leaving her for a younger woman (Kristen Bell). Then, one thing leads to another, and pretty soon Ian finds himself held captive by an oddly cool Louise who explains that she won't release him until he professes his love for her and commits to working on their marriage. And that's when things REALLY start to go wrong.

Stars Shine at 17th Annual Hamptons Film Fest

Pierce Brosnan attends the screening of The Greatest at Guild Hall in East HamptonEast Hampton was the place to be Thursday night for the screening of Pierce Brosnan's new film, "The Greatest." 007 himself had ticket holders swooning when he arrived with producer Beau St. Clair and officially kicked-off opening day of the Hamptons Film Festival at historic Guild Hall. Longtime festival supporter and Hamptons local Alec Baldwin was also on hand and all smiles, as was our favorite piano man Billy Joel, Bob Balaban, Amanda Pennington and the film's director, Shana Feste.

Earlier in the day Cheryl Hines was the guest of honor at the Women In Film Reception at The Hedges Inn. Cheryl and guests were welcomed by Hamptons Film Festival Executive Director Karen Arikian, Director of Programming David Nugent, and H.I.F.F. Chairman Stuart Suna. Cheryl was honored with the 2nd annual RoC Gold Standard in Filmmaking Award for a Feature Female Director. Her directorial debut, Serious Moonlight, staring Meg Ryan & Timothy Hutton, was screened prior to the reception at the UA East Hampton and met with rave reviews.

The day's festivities ran well into the night as the celebration continued at Gurney's Inn in Montauk. Following the screening of "The Greatest" at Guild Hall, Jitney's full of movie goers and V.I.P.'s descended upon Gurney's for their annual Opening Night Party. And, as always, the party did not disappoint.

We'll be back with more photos, movie reviews and party re-caps throughout the weekend and all next week, so be sure to check back. Until then, if you're looking to attend any screenings, be sure to get your tickets early! This year is proving to be a sellout and tickets are going fast. You can visit hamptonsfilmfest.org for a full schedule of films and show times.

[Photo: Lisa Wagner/Splash News]

Thursday Highlights For Hamptons Film Fest


12:00PM UA East Hampton Theater 4

Smiles: A Story of Roy Scheider
Short Films
Short Documentary, 2009, 7 min
Directed by: Brenda Siemer Scheider
Precedes: In My Hands: A Story of Marfan Syndrome
Interests: Biography, Documentary, View From Long Island

SMILES riffs on morality (and movie immortality) by way of tribute to the legendary, Academy Award®-nominated Roy Scheider (JAWS, ALL THAT JAZZ), his terminal struggle with multiple melanoma and his screen acting debut.

1:30PM UA East Hampton Theater 2

Serious Moonlight
World Cinema
Feature Narrative, 2009, 84 min
Interests: Comedy

After she arrives at her country home for a romantic weekend getaway, things don't go exactly as planned for high-powered Manhattan lawyer Louise (Meg Ryan). First, her husband of 13 years, Ian (Timothy Hutton), tells her that he's leaving her for a younger woman (Kristen Bell). Then, one thing leads to another, and pretty soon Ian finds himself held captive by an oddly cool Louise who explains that she won't release him until he professes his love for her and commits to working on their marriage.

3:00 PM Elie Tahari East Hampton

Babelgum Cocktail Reception to Celebrate the film Dirty Oil
Invitation Only
Elie Tahari East Hampton
1 Main St.

5:15PM UA East Hampton Theater 3

Schmatta: Rags to Riches to Rags
World Cinema
Feature Documentary, 2009, 75 min
Directed by: Marc Levin
Interests: Documentary, History

Produced by HBO Films, filmmaker Mark Levin chronicles the century-long story of the American garment industry, from its Lower East Side sweatshop beginnings to its booming post-WWII rise as an emblematic American/New York City institution and its devastating fall at the hands of a post-Reagan global economy.

7:00PM Guild Hall

The Greatest
Opening Night Film
Feature Narrative, 2008, 101 min
Directed by: Shana Feste
Interests: Drama

When Bennett Brewer is killed in a car accident, his mother Grace (Susan Sarandon) becomes fixated with discovering what his last words were. Meanwhile, her husband Allen (Pierce Brosnan), is immobilized by his inability to express his grief, and their surviving son is sliding into drug abuse. This disintegrating family is thrown for bigger loop when Rose, the girl who was with Bennett when he died, shows up pregnant with his child.

John Varvatos H.I.F.F. Cocktail Reception

Following the Hamptons International Film Festival’s screening of “Applesauce” on Saturday, October 10th, John Varvatos will be hosting a cocktail reception at John Varvatos East Hampton on Newton Lane.

In addition to cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, and just in case you needed a reason to shop 'til you drop, John Varvatos will also be donating 20% of the evening proceeds to the Hamptons International Film Festival.

John Varvatos Hosts Cocktail Reception at Newton Lane Store

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