"An Alien Planet of Hyper-Talented People and Good Times"

Woody Allen's New Movie Makes Its New York Premiere


Penélope Cruz   
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Last year, Woody Allen released one of his most successful films to date, Midnight in Paris, but the iconic filmmaker admits he has no clue why people liked it. "By sheer capriciousness, everyone seemed to love Midnight in Paris. I'm not saying it was a bad film, but I don't know why they went crazy over it all over the world—I really don't know why," he told at New York's Paris Theatre, where he was debuting his follow-up, To Rome With Love, last night. "It was an accident it was so successful. I made it the same way I make all of my movies and no one came to see some of those."

That certainly wasn't the case at the Cinema Society's screening of the new film. Commenting on the fans lined up outside and the full house inside, someone said, "When it's Woody, everyone shows up." Yesterday, "everyone" included cast members Alec Baldwin and Penélope Cruz, along with Jon Hamm, Chris Rock, John Legend, Moby, and Duran Duran's Nick Rhodes.

Greta Gerwig, a Woody first-timer, reported that she relished every moment. "When I got to Rome, I went straight to my first costume fitting, and then Alec Baldwin comes in and says, 'Ladies, let's all go out to dinner.' It felt like I was suddenly on an alien planet of hyper-talented people and good times." Carol Alt, who plays Baldwin's wife, explained, "Woody was looking for famous Italian actors, and believe it or not, I'm one of the most famous Italian actors—every film I've ever shot has been shot in Italy."

As for Allen's next film, he revealed it's not going to be in Europe at all. "I'm shooting a little in New York and the rest in San Francisco. It stars Alec Baldwin, Cate Blanchett, Sally Hawkins, and Peter Sarsgaard, Louis C.K.…I'm still casting." What's it about? "Now that, I can't tell you."

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