Turturro’s ‘Romance’ premieres

Musical comedy was delayed

Two years after bowing at the Venice Film Festival, “Romance & Cigarettes” finally made its New York debut at Clearview Chelsea West Cinema.

The Gotham-set musical comedy, which was originally a United Artists release, had some trouble finding its way to U.S. auds after a Sony-led consortium bought the label.

“Things fell through,” said pic’s writer-director John Turturro at the Aug. 30 bow. “It was a long route, but it’s finally over, and I am happy about that. It has played all over the world, so it’s nice to be home.”

Turturro said exec producers Joel and Ethan Coen suggested casting James Gandolfini in the lead role.

“He did a reading and he was great. After that I really wanted him for the part,” Turturro said. “He liked the project, but he was a little nervous about it. We went back and forth for a while. I decided to wait for him and I am really glad I did.”

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