Twenty-seven years after he was introduced to Americans via MoMA’s New Directors/New Films series, Pedro Almodovar returned to the museum Nov. 15 as the star of its film department fundraiser.

“That was the beginning of almost everything. I feel very grateful for this institution,” he told a crowd that included Drew Barrymore, Blake Lively and Sarah Jessica Parker.

“To me, he’s Spain’s Woody Allen,” said Anna Wintour, who co-chaired the event. “I don’t know Pedro very well, but he’s such a charming, funny, brilliant man that I imagine being on the set with him is a dream.”

There was one attendee, glamorous in Chanel, who has yet to see an Almodovar pic. “I’m a little young.” said Chloe Moretz, the 14-year-old “Hugo” star. “They’re a little risque for me now. Of course, I know who Antonio Banderas is.”