www.ubradio.net, 27 January 2010
the lysergic pirate of Savile Row crosses the threshold of the Foriegn Correspondents Club, to attend the gala event featuring 3 time Oscar winner Oliver Stone. Peter Rnic arrives with the film crew for Sawadee Pattaya TV and we set up shop. Felipe Frydman,the Argentine Ambassador radiates charm and bonhomie, chatting with Argentine- Iberian film director Marcello Von Schwartz at the bar. Peter Rnic interviews Von Schwartz for posterity.The night is hotting up.Jerry Hopkins, author of one of the important books on Jim Morrison, Nobody Gets Out of Here Alive,is holding court at the bar. The Doors film by Oliver Stone is one of my favorites. My theatre piece entitled Minuit Aux Pere Lachaise, that was performed here at the FCCT some years ago is a homage to Jim Morrison, Edith Piaf and Oscar Wilde. Check this out on www.magickpapers.com
I sortie to the smoking area and conduct an interview for Sawadee Pattaya TV on the outside patio, my subject is author-thespian Jake Anthony. Back inside I encounter Susan Dusty Aldous,lovely and glam,she is a noted activist and author. Rnic interviews film producer - actor Cameron Pearson. Joe Cummings graciously leaves the bar so I can interview him Joe has just interviewed Oliver Stone that morning, his story will appear in the Bangkok Post at the end of February. Joe spins tales of hanging with the Rolling Stones and Martin Scorsese at the Beacon Theatre for the movie shoot. Cummings was accompanied on that occasion by Maura Moynihan,author-poet and daughter of the late Dem Senator from New York, Daniel Moynihan. Maura wrote Yoga Hotel, a well recieved collection of short stories. I liaise with local film producer Tom Waller. The usual suspects lig and roll deep. Poseurs make claims to film projects and shoots that will never be. Same as it never was. Legit intellos, journos,and musos swap tall tales at the bar. The beautiful and the damned consort.
Oliver Stone affects a dashing entrance and takes to the podium. Oliver is casually attired in dark trousers and navy blue sweater.His reading glasses give him a proffessorial air.He steers away from the vacuous and glamorous, choosing instead to discuss El Salvador,Chile, Argentina and the real politique of South America, the rise of neo fascism and totalitarianism in China and Russia, and the deceptions of the Bush administration. He is a political animal, an intellectual and a historian. Charismatic and a born raconteur, he quotes Theodore Dreiser. He enters and exposes the heart of darkness unleashed upon the world in the last decade by corrupt politics, terrorism, religious fundamentalism and anti-intellectualism. Stone graciously concedes to enter into Q and A with the audience. I step to the microphone and make my inquiry.
Q. Method Acting, as espoused by Sanford Meisner, Lee Strasberg, and Stella Adler created some of the greatest stars of American Cinema. Did the philosophy of Metod Acting have any influence on your work.
A. The process in which an actor engages varies. Sir Anthony Hopkins,comes from the British tradition of internal process, yet between takes he is jocular and charming. Some actors demand silence in preperation for a shoot. I am not so inclined, but we must respect the actors decisions and choices in order to elicit a performance.My job is to get a performance any way I can.
Peter Rnic engages in Q and A
Q.I am representing Sawadee Pattaya TV. When are you going to shoot Pinkville.
A. I remember you. You were an actor in Alexander. You were very good. A Method actor for sure, always drunk. Pinkville had financing problems due to the implosion of the financial system 3 years ago. Bruce Willis wanted a rewrite,Willis had to move on to another project, nonetheless I would like to shoot that film in the future.
Quetion fly fast and furious. Some are incisive,others absolute trash, but Stone is always engaging. One woman offers her unsolicited screenplay and services as an actress. He smiles and moves on.The final Q of the eve is by another woman who demands to know why he should get 50 million a film while the financial inequality of the system is obvious. He patiently gives her a discourse on free enterprise and films as a financial institution. The audience enters into the absurdity of the situation, primed on alcohol, the spirits are riding high and an aura of Dionysian splendour envelops the night. Oliver rises to take his leave.He exits stage left,leaving in his wake an audience of journalists, actors,local producers- directors, bon vivants and hoi polloi wanting more.
Stone is the real deal.He is a rebel, who acknowledges the influence of Avatar in its ability to connect with audiences and conjure up political and sociological realities. He pulls no punches in his views on Vietnam, corruption in politics, or the process by which film can affect change on the world and society. Yet behind these assets I intuit a touch of the voluptuary. Mens sana en corpora sana. Tuesday he is on his way to Cambodia. Bangkok awaits the return of the maverick and contreversial cineaste.