Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Hep old cats

For my birthday last year, I covered the junket for Feast of Love, yet another in a series of underwhelming indies. But it starred Greg Kinnear, and I figured you could do worse things with your birthday than chat with Greg Kinnear, which is perfectly logical reasoning--until he drops out of the junket.

But I'd already signed up, so junket I did. It was roundtables, and we talked to a few people, including the writer Allison Burnett (who, surprisingly, is a man, but not surprisingly has written several other piles of shit), the director - the rather legendary Robert Benton (who wrote The Ice Harvest and Kramer vs Kramer, amongst other things, and is now, sadly, leaning a little towards the doddering side), and actress Radha Mitchell who spends a good portion of the movie--as all females in this movie did--rather naked.

Then came the piece de resistance: our current friend who is recuperating from a car accident, Morgan Freeman. I'd heard that he was a terrible interview, so I was scared, and then surprised when he came in seeming as bright-eyed and bushy-tailed as all get out. Not only does the man seem a good 20 years younger than I think he is, but I'm pretty sure he's cooler than me and probably more fun to party with.

Morgan sat down. He had a bottle of water, but had lost the cap for it, and was worried he'd spill the water and fry all the fancy tape recorders in front of him. I offered him the cap from my water (same type, obviously), and he tried to say no, but I informed him that he had no choice and had to accept it because it was my birthday and he had to do what I said.

This evidently was fascinating, and he started asking me questions like what my name was (we got very personal as you can tell), and then started singing Happy Birthday to me. But not the normal Happy Birthday song, some special, jazzy Morgan Freeman version of the Happy Birthday song. It was very surreal.

Then we segued into the standard junket stuff, at which point I discovered that by 'terrible interview,' my friend had meant that he was actually lovely and funny, but very skilled at evading answering anything. In addition to this, a fellow junketeer whom I didn't recognize but who was sitting next to me starting acting up. By this I mean the following:
1. I still, a year later, cannot decide what gender this person was
2. S/he smelled horrible
3. S/he had cartoonishly bucked teeth
4. S/he was obviously beside itself at getting to speak to Morgan Freeman and asked several questions (normally, we don't quite hog so much), including one 'question' which was instead informing Morgan Freeman that s/he knew his best friend, 'Dennis.' Freeman responded, 'I have a best friend Dennis?' S/he confirmed to him that indeed he did, but this did not seem to jog Freeman's memory. It was, how do you say, awkward.

Then the publicist came in to let Freeman off the hook, but before he left he room, he said, 'I forgot to ask how you all like the movie.' We all lied politely and said 'hrmrmamrm yes' because really, what kind of asshole is actually going to say, 'it sucked my ass and i wanted to kill myself in the screening room?' He seemed to pick up on the less than amazing response, however, and made a comment about how there were 10 people in the room and only 5 answered or something. Oh well.

So Morgan, hope you're recovering well. And if you need a good anesthesiologist in Memphis, let me know. I've got the hook up.

1 comment:

  1. I'll bet he sang you the Stevie Wonder Happy Birthday! It's got far more play in the black community than the traditional (funeral dirgey) B-Day song the rest of us suffer through year after year, and for good reason - it's totally awesome.