Cameron Crowe pic opens fest

To everyone’s surprise, it didn’t rain on the outdoor screening that marked Wednesday’s opening of the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival, although clouds were threatening for much of the day. But thanks to the dropping temperature, the assembled crowd was still very much aware of the weather.

Things kicked off with Denis Leary, introducing the as-seen-on-the-Oscars chorus of P.S. 22 performing “Walk Like an Egyptian,” led by a couple of members of the Bangles. After opening remarks from Jane Rosenthal, who commented on the longevity of the 10-year-old fest — “I now even have to wear glasses,” she sighed — she handed the mic to Martin Scorsese for an intro of Elton John, the subject of the opening night film, Cameron Crowe’s doc “The Union.”

“Now here we are at Tribeca,” he said. “I’m so honored. And I’m frightened — I haven’t seen the movie!”

During the course of the pic, which chronicles the collaboration between John and Leon Russell for their recent album “The Union,” the temperature fell enough to prompt several aud members to flee as soon as the movie was over, despite a post-screening perf by Sir Elton himself.

Evidently the stage didn’t have heat lamps, either. “I’m just about defrosting here,” John said as he sat at the piano. “So forgive me if I miss a few notes.”

Filed Under:

Follow @Variety on Twitter for breaking news, reviews and more