BFI London Film Festival Guests: Al Pacino

Autographed drawing of actor Al Pacino

Al Pacino joined Robert DeNiro and director Martin Scorsese on Sunday 13 October at the Closing Night Gala screenings of THE IRISHMAN, an epic saga of organised crime in America, at both the Odeon Luxe in Leicester Square and the Embankment Garden Cinema. While it’s not the first time the bona fide acting legends have worked together it is, surprisingly, the first movie Al has done with Marty. He has known Robert since 1968, appearing together in a handful of memorable films, beginning with the second instalment of Francis Ford Coppola’s THE GODFATHER trilogy in 1974.

THE IRISHMAN centres on Robert’s title character, a reminiscing geriatric union official and New York hitman Frank ‘The Irishman’ Sheeran and his involvement in the disappearance of powerful Teamster boss Jimmy Hoffa played by Al.

Accolades have been frequent during Al’s five decade career. In a 2003 Channel 4 poll, British TV viewers voted him the greatest film star of all time. He is one of the few to win the triple crown of acting-a competitive Oscar, Emmy and Tony. His single Oscar win (from eight nominations) was for his portrayal of blind and medically retired Army Officer Lieutenant Colonel Frank Slade in SCENT OF A WOMAN (1993). He also received the Best Actor BAFTA in 1976 for his roles as bank robber Sonny Wortzik in DOG DAY AFTERNOON and Michael Corleone, the crime family’s Don in THE GODFTHER PART II.

His two Emmys were for his portrayal of lawyer Roy Cohn in ANGELS IN AMERICA (2004) , which also won him a Golden Globe and Dr Jack Kevorkian in YOU DON’T KNOW JACK (2010) collecting a SAG Award as well. His double Tony wins were for his role as Bickham, a teenage drug addict in DOES A TIGER WEAR A NECKTIE (1969) and eight years later for the title role as a Vietnam soldier in THE BASIC TRAINING OF PAVLO HUMMEL. Al also received a Director’s Guild Award for the documentary LOOKING FOR RICHARD in 1997.

If critical response is any indication, his portrayal of Jimmy Hoffa will see additions to his trophy collection. The first was collected last night for Best Supporting Actor at the Hollywood Film Awards in Santa Monica.

Al signed for me as he was leaving the Corinthia Hotel in London on his way to the Gala screenings.

BFI London Film Festival Guests: Adam Driver

This year’s BFI LONDON FILM FESTIVAL has just concluded. Here is one of the guests whom I met at the event:

Autographed drawing of actor Adam Driver

Adam Driver had two films in this years BFI London Film Festival. He plays a report writer in THE REPORT investigating the CIA’s use of torture following the 9/11 attacks. Written and directed by Scott Z. Burns, it screened in the ‘Debate’ themed category at the Embankment Garden cinema on Saturday 5 October. Adam also starred in the comedy-drama MARRIAGE STORY as Charlie, a New York-based theatre director and his California-based wife Nicole (Scarlett Johansson), described as “vintage cinema about breaking up, while trying to keep it together.”

It had two Gala Screenings at the Odeon Luxe in Leicester Square and the Embankment Garden cinema on Sunday 6 October. Adam played the role of Adam Sackler in the HBO comedy-drama series GIRLS from 2012-2017, receiving three Emmy nominations, before achieving wider recognition as Kylo Ren in the STAR WARS sequel trilogy THE FORCE AWAKENS (2015), THE LAST JEDI (2017) and soon to be released, THE RISE OF SKYWALKER.

Last year he earned an Oscar and Golden Globe nomination for his portrayal of Dect. Philip ‘Flip’ Zimmerman in Spike Lee’s BLACKkKLANSMAN. He also returned to Broadway this year in BURN THIS at the Hudson Theatre, receiving a Tony Award nomination for his performance as Pale.

Adam signed my sketch at the Embankment Garden cinema before THE REPORT screening.

BFI London Film Festival Guests: Ray Liotta

This year’s BFI LONDON FILM FESTIVAL has just concluded. Here is one of the guests whom I met at the event:

Autographed drawing of actor Ray Liotta

Ray Liotta has had many memorable screen roles including criminal and FBI informant Henry Hill in Martin Scorsese’s GOODFELLAS (1990) and as Charlie Metcalf in the TV medical drama ER, for which he won a Primetime Emmy. He has also collected a Golden Globe nomination for his performance as ex-con Ray Sinclair in Jonathan Demme’s cult action comedy SOMETHING WILD (1986).

His portrayal of Frank Sinatra in the 1998 TV movie THE RAT PACK and Alamo survivor Lorca / Tom Mitchell in the 2015 TV miniseries TEXAS RISING received SAG Award nominations.

Ray plays divorce lawyer Jay in the comedy-drama MARRIAGE STORY, which had its Gala Screening at both the Odeon Luxe in Leicester Square and the Embankment Garden cinema on Sunday 6 October. He signed my sketch at Corinthia Hotel when he arrived for the Festival the day before.

BFI London Film Festival Guests: Laura Dern

This year’s BFI LONDON FILM FESTIVAL has just concluded. Here is one of the guests whom I met at the event:

Autographed drawing of actor Laura Dern

Double Oscar nominee, Golden Globe and a Primetime Emmy winner Laura Dern plays divorce lawyer Nora Fanshaw in Noah Baumbach’s comedy-drama MARRIAGE STORY, which had its Gala Screening at this years festival on Sunday 6 October at both the Odeon Luxe in Leicester Square and the Embankment Garden cinema.

Her two Oscar nominations were for her roles as orphan Rose in 1992’s RAMBLING ROSE (Best Actress) and as Bobbi Grey in the 2015 biographical drama WILD (Best Supporting Actress). She has won four Golden Globe Awards including one for her portrayal as Renata Klein in the HBO series BIG LITTLE LIES (2017-19) for which she also received a Primetime Emmy. She has already won the Best Supporting Actress award at this years Hollywood Film Awards for her performance in MARRIAGE STORY, which could be the first of many accolades.

Laura signed my sketch at the Ham Yard Hotel on Saturday 5 October, before she attended the MARRIAGE STORY Gala screenings the following day.

BFI London Film Festival Guests: Steve Coogan

This year’s BFI LONDON FILM FESTIVAL has just concluded. Here is one of the guests whom I met at the event:

Autographed drawing of actor Steve Coogan

Steve Coogan “dazzles as the ‘da Vinci of deal-making’ in Michael Winterbottom’s sharp-tongued satire on corporate greed.” He plays Sir Richard McCreadie, the king of High Street in GREED, which had its Headline Gala Screenings at the Odeon Luxe in Leicester Square and the Embankment Garden Cinemas on Wednesday 9 October.

In 2013 he co-wrote, produced and starred in the comedy-drama PHILOMENA, which earned him Golden Globe, BAFTA and two Academy Award nominations. Last year his performance as English comedian Stan Laurel in the film biopic STAN & LAUREL, opposite John C.Reilly as Oliver Hardy, earned him a Best Actor BAFTA nomination. It premiered at the BFI London Film Festival.

Steve signed my Stan sketch for me at the Embankment Garden cinema after the screening of GREED.

BFI London Film Festival Guests: Lily-Rose Depp

This year’s BFI LONDON FILM FESTIVAL has just concluded. Here is one of the guests whom I met at the event:

Autographed drawing of actor Lily-Rose Depp

With Johnny Depp and Vanessa Paradis for parents, an acting career was a given for 20 year-old Lily-Rose Depp. She plays Catherine of Valois, the future Queen of England and wife of Henry V in the historical drama THE KING, which screened at this year’s Festival. Writing in ‘The Film Stage’, Rory O’Connor described her performance as “a excellent cameo”.

It’s her second period drama, after her 2016 role as Kate Barlow alongside Natalie Portman in PLANETARIUM. Her upcoming projects include the thriller DREAMLAND with Gary Oldman and Arnie Hammer and the sci-fi film VOYAGERS alongside Colin Farrell, both in post-production.

She signed my portrait sketch at the Gala Screening of THE KING at the Embankment Garden Cinema on Thursday 3 October.

BFI London Film Festival Guests: Joel Edgerton

This year’s BFI LONDON FILM FESTIVAL has just concluded. Here is one of the guests whom I met at the event:

Autographed drawing of actor Joel Edgerton

Joel Edgerton demonstrates that he is a gifted and versatile an actor as he is a writer playing the soulful, tragic-heroic John Falstaff in THE KING and co-writing the screenplay with director David Michôd, adapted from Shakespeare’s HENRY IV, PARTS 1 + 2 and HENRY V texts. Familiar with the material from his involvement with the Sydney-based Bell Shakespeare Company’s stage productions in the late 1990’s, playing Prince Hal in HENRY IV and the title role in HENRY V.

Film followers will know him as Owen Lars in STAR WARS: EPISODE II-ATTACK OF THE CLONES (2002) and EPISODE III-REVENGE OF THE SITH (2005) with other appearances in such notable films such as THE GREAT GADSBY (2013), BLACK MASS (2015) and LOVING (2016) for which he received a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actor. In 2018 he wrote, directed and starred in BOY ERASED, about gay conversion therapy.

Joel signed my sketch at the Embankment Garden Cinema before THE KING’s Gala Screening on Thursday 3 October.

BFI London Film Festival Guests: Timothée Chalamet

This year’s BFI LONDON FILM FESTIVAL has just concluded. Here is one of the guests whom I met at the event:

Autographed drawing of actor Timothée Chalamet

Timothée Chalamet’s lead role in David Michôd’s THE KING follows his startling transformation from Hal, the fun-loving prince to an all-powerful monarch who unwittingly ascends the English throne. Described as a “stunnng, visceral portrait of Henry V” based on several plays from Shakespeare’s ‘Henriad’, it is one of literatures’s most acute character studies.

Timothée demonstrates his full acting range, perfectly capturing both the charm and recklessness of the youthful royal and the steely authoritarianism of a king in the making. It’s a range that was clearly evident in his two most acclaimed film portrayals-his role as 17 year-old Elio Perlman in 2017 coming-of-age romantic drama, which earned him an Oscar, BAFTA, Golden Globe, SAG and Critics’ Choice Award Best Actor nominations and teenage drug addict Nic Seff in BEAUTIFUL BOY, with further recognition in the form of Globe, SAG and Critics’ Choice Award NOMINATIONS.

At the age of 23 he has appeared in 14 feature films, with three more in post-production, since his debut five years ago. Timothée signed my sketch at the Gala Screening of THE KING on Thursday 3 October at the Embankment Garden Cinema.

BFI London Film Festival Guests: Atom Egoyan

This year’s BFI LONDON FILM FESTIVAL has just concluded. Here is one of the guests whom I met at the event:

Autographed drawing of director Atom Egoyan

Atom Egoyan. The Canadian stage and film director Atom Egoyan is one of the most celebrated contemporary filmmakers. His latest feature GUEST OF HONOUR, a story of family secrets with David Thewlis screened in the Festival’s Thrill category also on Tuesday 8 October.

His work is known for exploring the themes of alienation and isolation. One of my favourite Atom Egoyan films is THE SWEET HEREAFTER (1997) with Ian Holm. It won the Grand Prix and Jury Prizes at the 50th Cannes Film Festival and Atom was nominated for Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Director Oscars. He also took part in the LFF Connects series at the BFI on 8 October, where he signed my sketch.

BFI London Film Festival Guests: Rian Johnson

This year’s BFI LONDON FILM FESTIVAL has just concluded. Here is one of the guests whom I met at the event:

Autographed drawing of director Rian Johnson

Rian Johnson. Described as a ‘genre-hopping’ director, Rian’s fifth feature film, KNIVES OUT, a ‘wickedly witty and stylish murder mystery’, featuring Christopher Plummer, Jamie Lee Curtis, Toni Collette and Michael Shannon to name a few, had Gala screenings at both the Odeon Luxe and the Embankment Garden’s pop-up cinema on Tuesday 8 October. Rian, who wrote and directed one of the most successful movies of all time, STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI also did a Screen Talk on the same day at the BFI on London’s Southbank where he signed my sketch afterwards.