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Bygone ‘Portrait’ preem

NEW YORK – Moviegoers attending the Dec. 7 premiere of Jane Campion’s “Portrait of a Lady” at the United Artists 64th Street and Second Avenue Theatre were transported to a realm of Old World elegance. The time warp continued at the party afterwards, where guests ascending the stairs of the Racquet and Tennis Club were serenaded by nearly two dozen violinists dressed in tails.Tom Cruise escorted his lady, ‘Portrait’ star Nicole Kidman, to the Gramercy Pictures preem, but left soon afterward to catch a plane to London, where he is shooting “Eyes Wide Shut” for Stanley Kubrick. The night before, the couple attended the Gotham premiere of TriStar’s “Jerry Maguire.”

Also attending the “Portrait” screening were Kidman’s co-stars John Malkovich, Barbara Hershey and Martin Donovan, director Campion, producers Steve Golin and Monty Montgomery, and co-producer Ann Wingate.

Representing Polygram were the company’s CEO Alain Levy and his wife, Caroline Southey, veepee of literary rights at Polygram Filmed Entertainment, as well as PFE prexy Michael Kuhn and Gramercy Pictures topper Russell Schwartz.

Spotted at the black-tie soiree, held in concert with the New York Academy of Art, were Harvey Keitel, Paula Wagner and Rick Nicita, Rosie Perez, Carla Gugino and her “Spin City” co-star Connie Britton, Dan Hedaya, Rebecca Miller, Bonnie Hunt, Martha Stewart, Brian De Palma, Gus Van Sant, Allen Ginsburg and Cuba Gooding Jr..

More than 600 partygoers meandered through the Victorian-style private club, whose library and dining and smoking rooms appeared to have materialized from the pages of a Henry James novel.

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