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Wednesday, 30 September 2009

Colin Firth and Me


Last night we hosted a Green Party fundraiser screening of IN PRISON MY WHOLE LIFE, a documentary about Mumia Abu-Jamal, the radical journalist on death row accused of the death of a Philadelphia policeman. He's always claimed innocence, and many prominent celebrities and activists have taken up his cause.

Colin and Livia Firth are producers of the film, and were at The Dukes to promote it. They were interviewed by Green Party MEP Caroline Lucas (who is running for MP in the next general election).

The audience for the film was probably about 50% screaming female fans, 15-65, all looking for a chance to talk to Mr Darcy. What they made of the film, who knows. The fact that they showed up to watch this documentary is a testament to the power of celebrity. It's good to see some celebrities using it for good.

Fresh from his Best Actor win at Venice, Colin me and talked Festival faves and Italian politics. Turns out he's a massive Todd Solondz fan, and has deep knowledge of the intricacies of print versus broadcast power of the Italian media. Nice chap.

14 comments:

  1. I can't get "A Single Man" out of my head...brilliant film and brilliant portrayal by Colin Firth.

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  2. Caught the tail-end of Firth-fever when I turned up early for The Godfather. "He's so RUGGED!", I heard a woman exclaim. He certainly is a strikingly handsome man! Great to hear that he's a thoroughly nice fella, too. I can recommend The Last Legion to Firth-fans as a proper Guilty Pleasure!?! (Sir) Ben Kingsley's accent?! Answers on a postcard...

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  3. It was a brilliant evening,and I thank you very much! I love the cinema - it was our first time, and you and all the staff were very helpful (i.e. saying, "he's here, he's here!"). I shall be writing a review for the website, www.onhallowground.com at the weekend! Thanks, again, Anniexxx

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  4. Only 50% of the audience was female or only 50% of the females were screaming? LOL! (When he did a book reading for a friend in Rome there were almost only women in the audience.) I hope the film made them think.

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  5. What a sexist thing to say!! Don't you know that Colin is seen as the "thinking woman's crumpet"? I was there with a doctor and a lawyer from Greece!

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  6. Seems like you didn't actually watch the the doc (or know anything about the case), as Mumia was convicted of killing one Philadelphia policeman, not two, as written in your lead sentence.

    And your entire paragraph describing the composition of the audience was insultingly sexist as well. Very sad to see (and read) men having such attitudes in this day and age.

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  7. I'm pondering whether I should feel insulted that,at 66,I'm outside the demographic;but,on balance,toomuch to do,too little time!Seriously,surely Jon was simply reporting his own observations-feminists have fought much more impoerant targets than this(I grew up in the 1950s).What is commented upon is the power of celebrity culture,an insidious form of rob the poor to enrich the fewIhave to declare an interest-I've never seen the P&P Colin firth acted in,but I do recommend the book

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  8. Surley the most important thing is that a household name (and, yes, Celebrity!?!) has chosen to use his name and fame to raise the profile of a film that might, otherwise, have gone relatively unnoticed (just look at the debate it has sparked here!) I didn't see the film on Tuesday - but will be seeking it out on DVD. Never underestimate the power of Film to change lives and opinions (Kieslowski's A Short Film About Killing being instrumental in the abolition of the Death Penalty in Poland, for example.)

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  9. Thanks for the liveliest debate on this blog, well, ever. Apologies for the factual error - I shall correct it now! In terms of being sexist - as someone has pointed out, I was only observing that the majority of the audience didn't seem to know what film they were there to watch, and were just very keen to see Colin in person- and that they were mostly women. That said, how great to have that audience then watch a very challenging documentary that they would have otherwise probably never encountered!

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  10. It certainly beats the debate on most movie blogs...
    Fanboy 1: "Aliens Vs. Predator ROCKS!"
    Fanboy 2: "Aliens Vs. Predator SUCKS! And so do YOU, Fanboy 1!"
    Etc...
    Keep up the good work! Any CineCity news?

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  11. I was just there to throw pants, was there a film on too? I guess if anyone's sexist it's probably me for objectifying Mr Firth...

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  12. Jon, let me add that when we arrived the name of the film was incorrect on the board outside, it was only after we told the girl at reception that you changed it from In Prison All my Life to In Prison My Whole Life - Firthie fans are well aware of IPMWL!

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  13. p.s. I have posted my review on here:

    http://firthsisters.proboards.com/index.cgi?board=general&action=display&thread=1591&page=3

    You will also see my nice mosaic of the cinema and Brighton!

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  14. My review is now on here:

    http://www.onhallowground.com/2009/10/re....le-life_07.html

    Thanks for everything, Annie xxx

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