Keeping The Faith In Hollywood!

Keeping The Faith In Hollywood!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Rob Reiner Double Feature and Q&A

American Cinematique and the Egyptian Theater had a Rob Reiner double feature and Q&A on Thursday August 5, 2010. They showed my two favorites of Reiner, Stand By Me and Princess Bride so it was a must attend for me. Stand By Me stars great established actors (Richard Dreyfuss) as well as first time film actors and/or child actors who are still relevant today (Kiefer Southerland, John Cusack anyone?) while Princess Bride has swashbuckling fun and cute men (Cary Elwes, Mandy Patinkin) in tights (lol). Bride also had long term favorites of mine like Peter Falk (Columbo) and Billy Crystal plus wrestler, Andre the Giant(who can resist a movie with a real giant in it).

Both movies also happen to be adaptations from respected authors, William Goldman and Stephen King, respectively. Reiner gave little anecdotes about meeting each authors and their individual quirks. Reiner confessed that both Goldman and King are among his favorites and he was honored that both felt that he did a wonderful job with their stories. King's in particular as, The Body, the book on which Stand By Me was based, was a true story based on King's own childhood.

Reiner had us rolling in the aisles when he recalled behind the scenes stories from each movie set including how he got the child actors of Stand By Me to commit to the drama needed for that remarkable train scene. Or how he looked every where in England for a princess Buttercup with no luck only to have Robin Wright walk in to audition here in California and nail it. Wright's from the U.S. but Reiner felt she had the best "princess" look and accent combination (her dad's from England so that explains it). Reiner laughed when he recalled Jerry O'Connel's chutzpah when he was a child and he marveled at O'Connel's adult transformation and resulting marriage to sexy Rebecca Rominij. He also chuckled at the no-brainer choice when he was asked about casting Andre in the giant's role.

All wasn't laughs as Reiner got very sad during a touching retelling of how he gently helped then child actor, River Phoenix, to tap into his past hurtful experiences to get a difficult dramatic scene. Phoenix died of a fatal drug over dose in 1993 when he was only 23. His younger brother is actor, Joaquin Phoenix.

Reiner closed the Q&A with discussion of his new wonderful film Flipped which will be released at the end of August. Flipped is a companion piece to Stand By Me and should not be missed (see previous posts Jul 2010).

Update: 9/3/10
Warner Brothers is doing a poor job of promoting Flipped and I'm not sure if anyone will even know how good it is to go and see it. I'm going to have to start a prayer campaign to save this gem of a movie.

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