Colleen's thoughts on writing, directing and coaching, and her unique take on life itself!

Thursday, September 24, 2009



Landed at LaGuardia airport last night about 10pm and wow - the place was empty.

Shockingly so. The taxi driver said it's been this way for a while and it's a concern since September is usually a bustling time in the Big Apple.

ONLY take cars marked TAXI, btw, from the airport. The other, unmarked cars, who call themselves taxis (the hotel clerk called them notorious "black car taxis") charge exceedingly inflated rates. The polite drivers approach you inside the airport, ask if you need a taxi, when you say yes, they grab your bag and lead you to their cars - taking advantage of newbies who don't know about these things. When they arrive at your destination, they hit you with an enormous charge.

I found you can refuse to pay that amount, btw, because there is no meter. The driver may not be happy, but there's nothing they can do about it.

Or ... so I heard...

My hotel room at the Wellington is just right - perfect location near all the venues, not to little and not too large, full of history - and not cheap but not inflated rates, either.

It's warm and humid - my hair doesn't fare well in high humidity. I've walked everywhere, so Little Orphan Annie and I have something in common, now, and it's not the red dress.

I checked in for all my credentials and badges at the Friars Club and my goodness. Talk about history. More than a century of show business and comedy history; almost all men of course. But the photos and the name-dropping rooms (Billy Crystal Bar) leave me in wonder of all the souls and talent who have wandered the halls and rooms.

The Friars were pleased to discover, after our film was selected, that our own Elisabeth Röhm is a member!

Other filmmakers showed up to register, and we all have that, "Been there, done that" look of anyone who's done a comedy (it's such a subjective thing-we've all taken our hits along with the praise!).

I'm also dropping screeners of THE WHOLE TRUTH off to distributors who have requested them, with the placard we're handing out to New Yorkers and tourists. I find myself talking about the film with individuals more than passing out the placards. The folks who stop are genuinely interested in a screwball comedy that isn't the "vapid" (their words, not mine!) version we get from Hollywood these days, but a modernized throwback to the days of Carole Lombard, Lucille Ball and Rosiland Russell.

Being New Yorkers, they all remember Elisabeth from the five years she was on Law and Order.

Interestingly, everyone I've met is quite familiar with the Friars Club, but no one has heard of its maiden Friars Club Comedy Film Festival that starts tonight, so this should help get the word out - at least a little.


Speaking of tonight, I'm looking forward to seeing the Coen Brothers' new film and meeting them in person - there's a private reception for them starting at 6pm, followed by the screening of A SERIOUS MAN, then another more open reception for them and the film afterward.

Tomorrow there's a special luncheon for comedy filmmakers; Saturday afternoon a luncheon for screenwriters and Saturday night a party for feature film makers (as opposed to the shorts folks who have their own party tomorrow night). Ah, the perks of being a writer-director-producer. I get to go to all the lunches, dinners and receptions. I love networking!

Sunday night there's a closing party and awards ceremony, which should be interesting since they've not let us know of the type of awards that will be presented. So we don't know if we're up for any of them, or if they're pre-judged, or if we just get a gold star for being selected in this historic maiden festival.

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