'Love' is all around at film fest launch

NEW YORK — The sophomore Tribeca fest kicked into gear Tuesday with a parade and a premiere opening pic. Although fest officially began Friday with kiddie cinema offerings, Tuesday was when the grownups came out to march through downtown and along the red carpet.

“Down With Love” unspooled at the Tribeca Performing Arts Center, where festgoers were welcomed by an exuberant Jane Rosenthal as well as pic’s stars, Ewan McGregor and Renee Zellweger, and helmer Peyton Reed.

After-party was held in the imposing, glass-enclosed Winter Garden at the World Financial Center. Site, headquarters of fest sponsor’s American Express, was restored last year after suffering severe damage on Sept. 11, and the sprawling space gave revelers plenty of room to spread out. Unlike last year, when a lavish buffet appeased appetites, guests this time had to sate themselves with a humble spread of cheese and crackers.

Among those in the crowd were Doug Liman, Dylan Kidd, Fisher Stevens and Bai Ling. Cast members from ContentFilms’ “Love Object” cleared the ropes, but film’s real star, a lifelike, anatomically correct, $6,000 silicone doll named Nikki (specially clad in lingerie for the evening) was turned away.

The night’s real exec and thesp power, however, migrated to the Grill Room Restaurant. Last year, the party’s VIP area was in the same space, but cordoned off. The separate party zones contributed to the soft-launch feel at the Winter Garden Tuesday night.

Fox honchos Carla Hacken, Tom Rothman, Jim Gianopoulos and Elizabeth Gabler were among the guests gathered upstairs. Co-stars Tony Randall kibbitzed with his modern-day doppelganger, David Hyde Pierce. Bob Balaban, Michael Moore and “Down” stars Sarah Paulson, Rachel Dratch and Jeri Ryan were also in attendance.

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