Filmmaker Robert Weide asks Woody Allen 12 questions that he's never been asked before.
I am surprised that he would choose sporting events over movies, but as he says, he's seen 'em all at this point. Weide directed the excellent documentary on Allen, which is available on DVD or streaming at Amazon. (via viewsource)
Journalist William Zinsser played a bit part in Stardust Memories, one of Woody Allen's early films. He'd interviewed Allen early in the director's career, ran into him in NYC, and got a call a week later from his assistant.
"Bill, honey?" said a young woman's voice. "This is Sandra from Woody Allen's office. Woody wondered if you'd like to be in his new movie."
That was something new in phone calls. I had never done any acting or dreamed any theatrical dreams. But who didn't want to be in a Woody Allen movie? I knew that he often cast ordinary people in small roles. What small plum did he have for me? I hesitated for a decently modest moment and then told Sandra I'd like to do it.
"Good," she said. "Woody will be very pleased." She said that someone else would be calling me with further details.
Beginning with Allen's childhood and his first professional gigs as a teen -- furnishing jokes for comics and publicists -- American Masters -- Woody Allen: A Documentary chronicles the trajectory and longevity of Allen's career: from his work in the 1950s-60s as a TV scribe for Sid Caesar, standup comedian and frequent TV talk show guest, to a writer-director averaging one film-per-year for more than 40 years.
The first part aired last night (it's rerunning throughout the week so check listings, etc.) and the second part is tonight.
A young-ish Christopher Walken appears in Annie Hall but his name is misspelled in the credits as "Christopher Wlaken". Were this 1990, I might have invented a eastern European backstory for Wlaken, who, perhaps, Americanized his name sometime after appearing in the film. But as we live in the future, a cool hunk of glass and metal from my pocket told me -- before the credits even finished rolling -- that the actor was born Ronald Walken in Astoria, Queens.