Ah, November and December the awards season! I have to tell you, I love awards season time, it’s a tad frantic but so much fun. You can hear right from the stars themselves about movies, their work, etc… It’s one of the awesome things about living in LA.
Jack headed out to check out an advance screening of The Sessions with a Q and A with the notoriously difficult Helen Hunt, William H. Macy, and Winter’s Bone star John Hawkes.
Check out his recap of how it all went down after the jump!!
Awards season is upon us. Hands down, the fall is my favorite time of
year when it comes to autograph collecting. Everyone (and I literally
mean everyone) is promoting their projects. Even last night, a friend
and I randomly bumped into Jon Hamm outside the Key Art Awards.
Needless to say, celebrities are constantly out this time of year.
Last week I was fortunate to attend an advance screening of “The
Sessions,” which tells the story of poet Mark O’Brien, a man stricken
with polio who loses his virginity to a sex surrogate. Since the film
debuted at the Sundance Film Festival, John Hawkes and Helen Hunt have
been praised for their performances and after seeing the film it’s
easy to understand why. I would be shocked if this film doesn’t obtain
multiple Academy Award nominations.
Writer/Director Ben Lewin crafted a well balanced script that blends
comedy and drama together to create a charming film everyone should go
see. Ever since Sundance I have been dying to catch this film and it
didn’t disappoint. So when the opportunity came to see it with stars
John Hawkes, Helen Hunt, William H. Macy and writer/director Ben Lewin
I immediately jumped at it.
6:45p.m.- I’m running late to the screening. The problem with special
screenings at the LACMA is you never know how early to show up.
Sometimes people arrive early and some people stroll in until the very
last minute. I’m about 10 minutes away and my friend is already
waiting inside with my ticket.
6:55p.m.- I parked my car and start walking towards the Bing Theater.
7:00p.m.- My friend greets me at the door and we walk inside. The
theater seems quite empty for an award contender. Compared to the
“Hotel Noir” screening weeks prior, there definitely seems to be less
people here. My friend and I are both extremely excited for the movie,
especially since we might be seeing a Q&A with award contenders.
7:25- It’s confirmed, there are definitely less people here than at
the screening for “Hotel Noir.” Really? You have two Academy Award
nominees and one Academy Award winner, who all might be potentially
nominated again for this film, yet “less people are interested” in
checking this out????? Maybe because there is no official “Oscar
buzz”? This makes no sense. Just shows even Academy Award caliber
films don’t always guarantee great attendance.
Approximately 7:30- Elvis Mitchell comes out to introduce the film and
I have to say he is one of the best moderators around. Almost all the
others, especially Geoff Boucher and Pete Hammond, lack personality
and stumble way too much (including not knowing what films the talent
worked on and misquote frequently). The anticipation is killing me
because I know we’re going to watch a great film.
About 9:10- The movie didn’t disappoint and is easily on my Top 10
list of 2012. Elvis introduces the cast and crew one by one starting
with John Hawkes, William H. Macy, Helen Hunt, Ben Lewin and producer
Judi Levine. Unlike other Q&A’s, Mitchell articulates compelling
questions for all the guests. However, since the move from the
Arclight/Landmark theatres to the LACMA, attendees are no longer
provided opportunities to ask the talent questions (My first screening
included a Q&A with the entire cast of “Black Swan” and primarily
Darren Aronofsky was asked questions-not Portman, Kunis, Cassel, or
Hershey). In most cases I prefer this instead of hearing one
lackluster question after the other. Fortunately, most of the guests
generally stay afterwards to greet fans and answer personal questions
if they aren’t in a hurry.
As soon as the Q&A ended I was able to get Helen Hunt to sign my DVD
of “As Good As It Gets.” She really seemed standoffish and not a
people person. You can definitely tell she doesn’t like being
surrounded by people. She only signed a handful of autographs, maybe
five or so before taking off (Looking at it afterwards I was not
impressed and it’s easily the worst Academy Award winner autograph I
have ever obtained).
The next I got was William H. Macy, who is as nice as you get. He
graciously signed my “Shameless” DVD and we talked about what a change
of pace it was to go from Frank (an alcoholic deadbeat dad) to a
priest. William H. Macy is the man!
Finally, I met John Hawkes, who I had been dying to meet for quite
some time. Ever since I first saw Me And You And Everyone We Know I
have been a huge fan of his. Over the years I have been impressed with
what a talented character actor he truly is and how he seamlessly
blends into ensembles (Deadwood), dominates a supporting role (Martha
Marcy May Marlene and Winter’s Bone) or steals scenes (Eastbound and
Down). I spent a long time debating, whether or not to complete an
Eastbound and Down cast DVD or get my copy of Me And You signed. I
decided to go for the latter and brought along my Blu-ray of Winter’s
John was taking his time with everyone, making sure he gave them
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their few moments. If he doesn’t get nominated I will be shocked
because this is hands down one of the best performances of the year!
Until the next time, happy autograph hunting