I’ve been reading The New Yorker quite religiously for more than a decade now. I don’t remember how many subscriptions I gave to friends as gifts over the years and it is still one of the few subscriptions that I receive in the mail every week. And, the New Yorker Festival feels like the pages of the magazine literally coming to life for a weekend throughout the city with talks, conversations, readings, performances, panels with individuals that are at the top of their game in their respective fields — including arts, sciences, politics, sports, theater, music, literature, film, TV, food and more… As someone that attended quite a few events at the festival over the years, I can confidently say that, independent of the context, all events share one characteristic: intelligence. The festival participants are without exception endowed with some real brainpower. They are, in The New Yorker‘s own words, “some of the most talented and influential thinkers about topics ranging from politics to pop music, science to cinema, and so much more.”
Well, it is the New Yorker Festival time of the year again! And I cannot help go back to my most favorite New Yorker Festival moment ever. It was exactly seven (whaaaaaaaa??????) years ago that JaniaJania and I were extremely lucky to attend the fabulous conversation New Yorker staff writer Lauren Collins had with Damian Lewis at the festival.
When Damian attended the ceremonies for the 70th Anniversary of D-Day on Utah Beach back in 2014, he met the WWII veteran Jim “Pee Wee” Martin. A member of the 101st Airborne Division, Martin got his nickname because he was the lightest man in his regiment. He parachuted into Normandy on D-Day and was also a part of the ill-fated “Operation Market Garden” and the Ardenne Forest Offensive aka “Battle of the Bulge” during the WWII. He was 93 years old on the 70th Anniversary of D-Day but this did not hold him back from parachuting into Normandy to re-live that day all over again! And he did it again, in Holland this time, on the 75th anniversary of Operation Market Garden. He was 98. Continue reading “Throwback Thursday to D-Day’s 70th Anniversary on Utah Beach: In Memory of Jim “Pee Wee” Martin”
After the screenings at Film at Lincoln Center in New York and American Cinematheque in Los Angeles in August, the recently digitally restored ‘Keane’ is going to Boston’s Brattle Theater for screenings on September 23 and 24. In celebration of these new screenings, I would love to share, one more time, my account of the recent ‘Keane’ screening and Q&A with director Lodge Kerrigan and Damian himself at Film at Lincoln Center.
Well, ladies and gentlemen, August 2022 marks, after three years of famine, a month of delicious feast, a Damian Lewis one to be precise, for me! In early August, I was so privileged to be in the audience at Damian’s very special first gig at Omeara in London. And then I was there at the newly 4K restored Keane screening followed by a lively Q&A discussion with director Lodge Kerrigan and Damian himself. It was full house at Francesca Beale Theater at Film at Lincoln Center. Lodge Kerrigan and Damian introduced the movie together, they watched it with us, and then took the stage for more than a half-hour Q&A which actor Christopher Abbott led with his questions and kindly made room for audience questions towards the end. As a huge admirer of independent cinema and its fearless warriors that take risks and do art without taking the ‘box office factor’ into account, I was honored to share the evening with Mr. Kerrigan, Damian, and fellow independent movie fans. The evening felt like a collective celebration of independent cinema!