New York, .- The historic New York institution of the seventh art, the Film Society of the Lincoln Center, celebrated this Monday half a century of life with a gala in which prominent filmmakers and actors, including Pedro Almodóvar and Martin Scorsese, praised its crucial role in the diffusion and protection of the cinema.
“I would like to shout with all my strength that as long as the Film Society of the Lincoln Center continues to exist, the cinema will last,” Almodóvar said during his speech, in which he recalled how his relationship with the institution began in 1985 with the projection of “What have I done to deserve this?”.
In an interview with Efe, the Spaniard pointed out that the film’s participation in New York’s New Directors / New Films festival marked the first time that the American public saw his work, and that it “helped him a lot” to catapult his career to international level.
Since 1985, the New York Film Festival, organized by the film Society of the Lincoln Center, has shown another 10 films by Almodóvar, becoming a vital tool in the introduction of the works of the Spanish filmmaker to the New York and American public.
The head of “All About My Mother” also revealed that he considers that the organization was important in its recognition in other European countries, such as France, where he initially felt that they did not take him “really seriously”.
“It was only after succeeding at the Lincoln Center when (in France) they began to have an interest that went beyond the anecdotal of my films,” he said.
In his speech at the gala, Almodóvar said he especially admired the New York Film Festival because “he has managed to maintain a difficult balance between low budget films and larger-scale productions.”
“It only focuses,” he explained to the public, “on the quality of the films and how interesting they are.”
Along with the Spanish, they participated in the Scorsese commemorative event, of which seven of their films have been screened at the New York Film Festival, organized by the institution, and in 1998 they received their Chaplin award.
“I know when I enter this place that the cinema will be safe and protected because that has been their mission from the beginning,” said Scorsese, who was described by Almodóvar as “the great director alive since the 60s until now” .
“We all love movies desperately,” the Spaniard told Efe, “but he has also shown it in very interesting and pedagogical documentaries about world cinema.”
The actor Paul Dano also wanted to be part of the celebration, in which he said that the screening in New Directors / New Films of the movie “LIE” (2001), which stars, was the first time he observed a “wider world” of the cinema “and where he found” a home “.
Meanwhile, the American Michael Moore, responsible for so-called social dye documentaries such as “Bowling for Columbine”, asked the audience if he had had the career he had if the Film Society had not selected for the New York Film Festival his feature film “Roger & Me” (1989).
For his part, the director John Waters showed his total confidence in the institution: “Just tell me what movies to see and I will follow your orders blindly, you should also,” he said amidst the laughter of the audience.
The actress Tilda Swinton also attended the gala, where she described the organization as a “playground for authentic voices”, as well as the director and screenwriter Darren Aronofsky, his partner Dee Rees, and the interpreters Jake Gyllenhaal and Zoe Kazan .
The institution not only marked the 50th anniversary with the great gala on Monday, but also with a subtle change of name, which now goes from “The Film Society of Lincoln Center” to a shortened “Film at Lincoln Center” (FLC), it was announced in a statement.
“We want to continue to expand our impact and reach even greater audiences, we are very excited to unveil our new name and brand, which will give us the opportunity to look to the future,” the center’s executive director, Lesli Klainberg, said in the text. EFE)