Film Society, Unifrance present event

Catherine Deneuve was among the mass of Parisians who lent Gotham’s Paris Theater some authenticity on Thursday night.

Deneuve and fellow French thesps, directors and execs were in town to kick off the 16th annual Rendez-Vous With French Cinema series, presented by Film Society of Lincoln Center and Unifrance Films.

“We’re not in Paris – no, but at least the idea of France is here,” said Francois Ozon, director of “Potiche,” which opened the series and stars Deneuve.

In true French style, the film got off to a late start, and with no green room on the premises, Deneuve and entourage were forced to wait for her fellow countrymen’s arrival in an alleyway outside the theater.

Things got better at the Rouge Tomate afterparty, where Deneuve waited patiently with the commoners at the bar for a glass of wine, before joining friends in the loosely guarded VIP area.

“In the 30 years that I’ve been in the business, I’ve gone out of my way to attend any film that is shown where Catherine Deneuve is present,” SPC’s Michael Barker said. “I mean it. Just ask her!”

Unfortunately, Deneuve was done speaking English for the night.

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