Last Thursday was the opening night for the beloved San Francisco International Film Festival. The 55th annual event runs for the next 15 days and is centered primarily at the Sundance Kabuki Cinemas and the Castro Theatre. SFIFF is considered a favorite holiday amongst film buffs, featuring 200 films and live events. The festival is a five-star, upper-tier showcase of cinematic discovery and innovation with the rolling hills of the City by the Bay as the backdrop.
I headed to the Castro Theater for the opening night film, Farewell My Queen; which follows the relationship between Marie Antoinette and one of her readers during the final days of the French Revolution (and slightly after bid bidets were invented.) Set out to photograph on the red carpet, I got to the Castro Theater late. (It had something to do with my phone service -- more on that later.) So instead of photographing French film director, Benoît Jacquot, all I got to photograph was the actual red carpet. Quite red, isn't it?
Farewell My Queen, is a French historical costume drama set at Chateau Versailles. Powdered wigs abound. One thing you know about me, I really enjoy historical costume dramas and lots of powered wigs in their movies. It's powered-wig-tastic.
Say what you will about powdered wig movies -- this one starred the stunning Léa Seydoux: from Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol and Midnight in Paris. Plus, the movie lets us see her sans costume, in this costumed drama.
As always, the SFIFF threw a splendid opening night party -- held at Terra Gallery. Party-goers got into the spirit by dressing as members of Louis XVI's court. (Okay, they were paid to do so.) Drinks flowed, food was eaten, and films were discussed. (Did I mention that some drunk woman asked me, without being ironic, if I was the film's director?)
Come check out SFIFF -- April 19-May 3. You have 15 days of pure film bliss ahead of you.