Birthdates of the film greats
by Stella Braintree
Okay, last night I had this trippy dream I was at a café sipping a thick black beer, and heard someone pull up a chair. So I’m peering Through a Glass Darkly and as I set down the sludge-filled mug, I’m Face To Face with a grinning Ingmar Bergman.
“For your information, I’ve been on a Roman Holiday.”
“Well, good for you… I enjoyed the Summer with Monika.”
“Oh, she’s lovely, though she can’t compete with Mrs. Miniver,” spat Wyler.
“You’re no longer with The Heiress?!” Bergman asked, a hint of schadenfreude.
“You don’t say?”
“She turned out to be a real Jezebel.”
Bergman shook his head. “That’s a Shame.”
“Yes, I always found her to be such a Funny Girl,” a man interjected.
Where’ve you been?” Wyler inquired.
“That’s rather rude!” scolded Bergman.
“Oh, I meant it with an Absence of Malice.”
As they bickered, it occurred to me I’m sitting with These Three directors and should whip out a screenplay ‘cause, like, how often does this happen?!
“My Fair Lady, may I join you?”
Before I could respond Wyler bellows out, “George Cukor! You’re late!”
Pollack interrupted, “The Way We Were raised –“
I know — “Dinner at Eight doesn’t mean ten!”
“Whoops,” offered the spiller. “Guess I was in My Own Private Idaho.”
“What’s your name?” Ingmar asked, more curious than cross.
“Gus Van Sant,” he said.
I chimed in, “He’s a director, too. I see him when I’m Goodwill Hunting… Remember, this week’s blue tags.”
“Sorry, fellas. Jerry Maguire kept me late again,” he plunked next to Cukor.
“Always an excuse…” chided Pollack.
And then a chap who’d been Following me earlier swooped by the table. Wyler eyed his watch, “Well, look who’s finally graced us with his presence.”
“Christopher Nolan, pull up a chair,” Bergman added.
“Don’t have time,” said Nolan. “Batman Begins in ten minutes and I don’t want to miss it.”
“Well, take a berry as a Memento.”
Nolan plucked a couple from the bowl and was about to speed off when suddenly…
“Could that be — Dr. Strangelove?” Van Sant called out, shielding his eyes.
“Or Spartacus?” Crowe queried over the drone.
Someone yelled, “Hey, how ‘bout some bubbly?”
Next thing I knew a waiter was filling flutes.
How fun, I thought. Champagne, directors, spaceships… It’s so damn glamorous! So positively grand! I’m practically a player!
Wyler nodded in my direction, “Give her the bill.”
Huh? “Why me?”
“It’s our birthday month, not yours!” snorted Ingmar.
As I scavenged my purse, blood rushed to my face. Four bucks and a Goodwill receipt. This sucked — I just came for a beer. Checked my pockets… a dime… three pennies.
“Show me the money!” the waiter insisted. “Show me the… “
“Money… the money…” The group repeated in unison, their voices becoming louder.
The waiter scratched my hand, “The meo-oney… Show me the meow-y… me-OW-ey…”
And I was jolted awake!
I sat up in bed, Eyes Wide Shut and my heart beating wildly.
My cat thumped her tail, “Meow!”
Oh, thank goodness! It was a dream — A silly nightmare in-the-making. Whew! Wow, so glad I avoided that one… Sheesh, directors can be expensive!
Happy Birthday to all – and thank you for years of fabulous filmmaking!
July 1 – William Wyler, Sydney Pollack
July 7 – George Cukor
July 13 – Cameron Crowe
July 14 – Ingmar Bergman
July 24 – Gus Van Sant
July 26 – Stanley Kubrick
July 30 – Christopher NolanTags: Cameron Crowe, Christopher Nolan, Filmmakers, George Cukor, Gus Van Sant, Hollywood, Ingmar Bergman, July birthdays, Stanley Kubrick, Stella Braintree, Sydney Pollack, William Wyler