Last night, the beautifully designed, newly re-opened Museum of the Moving Image in Queens hosted a screening of “The Fighter,” the first film in their David O. Russell retrospective. That screening was followed by an hour-long conversation between Russell himself and long-time friend and filmmaker Spike Jonze. Jonze interviewed Russell on the condition that when Jonze had a new film out, the Museum would do his retrospective and Russell would return the favor and interview him. (Keep up the great programming, guys, seriously.) It was a candid, funny chat that zig-zagged through Russell’s entire career, starting with his Sundance splash “Spanking the Monkey” through his latest film, boxing drama “The Fighter.”
During the Q&A, a man interrupted Spike Jonze mid-sentence shouting from the middle of the auditorium: “Excuse me, I loved ‘The Fighter,’ it was great. I’m leaving but that was a great movie.” Both Russell and Jonze were amused by this, as was the audience who assumed that in Queens you’re likely to run across all kinds of characters but the couple introduced themselves to be actress Rosie Perez and her cousin, actor Sixto Ramos. Perez, clearly embarrassed said they had to leave because “they’re going to stop serving at the 5 burger place [a restaurant across the street from the museum],” but that she “loved” the film. The couple were called to the stage by Russell who reminded the actress that they once served on a Sundance jury together — she had no recollection.
Bizarre? Very. Random? Yes. The kind of strange scene that seems to follow director David O. Russell around like a magnet? Clearly. More from this very long, very extensive and super interesting Q&A tomorrow. — Cory Everett