Robert de Niro other Jane rosenthal founded the Tribeca Festival in 2002 to bring downtown New York to life after 9/11. Nineteen years later, as the city struggles to rediscover normalcy after the pandemic shutdown, the festival has an equally invigorating feel. The festival is not only the first major North American film festival to be held in person since COVID-19, but the first major cultural milestone to draw New Yorkers out of their homes. Manhattan’s streets and subway may still look a bit barren, but Tribeca’s outdoor screenings (the ones this writer has seen at least) have been well-attended.
“It reminds me of the feeling just after 9/11,” he said. Julian Schnabel, the painter, filmmaker and native of New York. “Robert and Jane helped people re-inhabit restaurants and other downtown businesses that had suffered from what happened. In the process of doing that, I think people felt that they were doing something useful and helping to regenerate the neighborhood and realizing how life could go on. That positive energy has been synonymous with what the Tribeca Film Festival is all about. “
“People help by doing what they know how to do. I’m a painter, so I make paintings, ”said Schnabel, who partnered with the festival and Chanel this year to launch an art project in which artists created original sketches to beautify cityscapes and empty storefronts in lower Manhattan.
Schnabel was talking to Vanity fair in anticipation of Thursday’s anniversary screening of Basquiat, the 1996 biographical film about the doomed prodigy of the ’80s, which was shown in the garden of the Museum of Modern Art. The remaster of the film, starring Jeffrey Wright, Benicio, the bull, old gary, David Bowie and Claire forlani“It’s black and white, an idea inspired by a technical malfunction in the Hamptons.”
“For the 20th anniversary of Basquiat, they screened it in Montauk, on the side of a building in a kind of impromptu celebration, “Schnabel explained.” They were a group of friends sitting on couches and the guy working on the projector didn’t know how to correct the color. I’m watching the movie and it came out in black and white. At first I thought, [annoyed] ‘Oh Lord.’ Then I was watching it and I was like, ‘Wow.’
The black-and-white film is juxtaposed in the credits, Schnabel said, with a sequence in which Jean-Michel paints in color. “I’m curious to see it with an audience,” said Schabel, grateful that seeing a movie with an audience is a possibility again these days. “After this pandemic where people had to stay isolated, the idea that they can finally come together is powerful.”
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