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November 19-20, 2003

November 19th was both the screening and Pinewood Dialogue for Tim Burton‘s Big Fish, and the first of two nights of release parties for the new Diamanda Galás double-CD sets. I had the Diamanda ticket for some time and tried to exchange it for the next night when I got my Tim Burton ticket. Couldn’t do it, and thought I’d run down to Diamanda right after Burton.

Sadly there was some confusion as to whether Mr. Burton would be visiting with theatergoers afterwards and I lost a half hour of Diamanda time standing around waiting in the lobby talking with other folks. He apparently was slightly ill and didn’t come out at all. I was slightly bummed because the usually friendly assistant guy at AMMI, Peter Dowd, was in an upset mood and barked out some anger about ‘trying to meet the stars’ when asked about Burton, so some glum was upon me, combined with the rainy night, and I got back to the city around 10:30. I could’ve almost tried for Diamanda, whose show started at 9:30, but whatever. Lateer I read she was to perform a Tracey Nelson song and I’m sure it was ‘Down So Low,’ darnit.

I came home to find a message from Gaspar Noé, director of Irreversible and I Stand Alone. So the next day was much more fun. I gave a call to the cell phone number given, which turned out to be Mike Ryan’s number. Mike did locations on a few Todd Solondz movies, produced Todd’s latest, and was location manager on Far From Heaven. Gaspar and Mike picked me up in the afternoon and we drove around a bit while Gaspar videotaped the New York streets for location ideas for his next film. We checked out Chisholm Larsson Gallery where Gaspar picked up a nice French Holy Mountain poster and we visited the new J. Fields Gallery which is now just a workshop and barely a gallery. I really wish now I had taken pictures of the old place. I don’t know when I’ll ever see such a huge space displaying such huge international posters again. Waaaaah!

Mike took of and Gaspar and I did some interview in his hotel room, but the outgoing phones were not working and he had to make calls from a pay phone:

So I went back home and Gaspar called around 10 pm and came by with his friends Ryan and Erin, and it turns out we had a few mutual friends including Joel St. Germain who also contributed to the ‘On The Prowl’ edition of Xavier Laradji’s Timeless. Ryan has the most gigantic collection of bizarre, out-there, obscure films, second only to Steve Puchalski. It was fun hanging out and watching stuff but I felt kinda bad that most of my stuff was in storage as we’re still getting ready to paint. There were still a few fun things to share, and it was nice having neat fun cool people to hang out with for a few hours.

So marked the first two days of an incredible whirlwind of entertainment and adventure. Nov. 19-Nov. 27, 2003 were just nine days of adrenaline and glee.