It’s not often Woody Allen is seen in Los Angeles, much less promoting a movie. But that was the case Monday when DreamWorks hosted a buffet dinner (in conjunction with a promotional screening of “The Curse of the Jade Scorpion” at the Bruin) in the helmer’s honor at Musso and Frank.
Allen made it clear he’s “never been a fan of promotion, then or now. I don’t like to get out and push people to see my movies. I don’t like to get out and say: ‘Go see my film. This is great!’ I’m not the one to tell you that. I made the film. If people like it, I’m thrilled. If they don’t like it, I’m disappointed.”
Allen said he’s been doing more promotion because DreamWorks marketing chief Terry Press “has tried to bring me out of myself, to get into the swing of things. She’s come up with some very palatable promotions. Last year, she sent me to some colleges to speak. I didn’t feel it was a total waste of time. This year they have me doing these jazz concerts. She’s been clever about it.”
Allen then recalled the first promotion he’d ever done (“I was new to promotion. I never heard of promotion”): a multi-city tour for 1971’s “Bananas.”
“I went down to New Orleans and when I got off the plane, I was met by a gorilla giving me bananas and people taking photographs. I went into cardiac arrest. I learned early the depths people will sink to when they’re promoting something.”
Among those dining were DreamWorks’ Jeffrey Katzenberg and Jim Tharp; “Jade” stars Elizabeth Berkley, Helen Hunt, Charlize Theron and David Ogden Stiers; plus guests John Burnham, Adam Goldberg and Julia Ormond.