Chevy Chase, Laraine Newman, Lorne Michaels turn out for world premiere of Love, Gilda
The 17th Tribeca Film Festival is officially underway, the event once again kicking off with the world premiere of a prominent documentary feature.
Tribeca co-founders Robert De Niro and Jane Rosenthal joined an array of stars at the Beacon Theatre Wednesday night to see Love, Gilda, about beloved comedian and Saturday Night Live original cast member Gilda Radner. SNL producer Lorne Michaels turned out for the premiere, along with several of Gilda's co-stars from the show's earliest days including Chevy Chase and Laraine Newman. Paul Shaffer, part of SNL's original house band, also came by. Tina Fey, one of Radner's successors on the show, introduced the documentary, which was directed by Lisa D'Apolito.
She was so authentically herself and so regular, in so many ways.
“She was so authentically herself and so regular, in so many ways,” Fey said of Radner. Referring to future comedians who watched Gilda growing up, she noted, “She was who she was on the TV. We all saw that and were like: ‘I want to do that, and it’s possible.’ It was an early example to me of how important representation is for everyone from every walk of life. Gilda was our equivalent of Michelle Obama."
D'Apolito gained access to home movies, audio recordings and Radner's journals for the film, creating a portrait of a complex performer who earned enormous success and created indelible characters but who struggled with body image and an eating disorder. Ovarian cancer would claim Radner's life in 1989 when she was just 42.
Tribeca programmer Dan Hunt calls Love, Gilda "a touching tribute to and a fascinating contemplation of the comedian’s enduring cultural impact."
Matthew Carey is a documentary filmmaker and journalist. His work has appeared on Deadline.com, CNN, CNN.com, TheWrap.com, NBCNews.com and in Documentary magazine.