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A Sunday Spent in a “Submarine” with Ben Stiller and Co.

A Sunday Spent in a "Submarine" with Ben Stiller and Co.

Ben Stiller and Richard Ayoade post on the “Submarine” red carpet. Photo credit: Clint Spaulding/Patrick McMullan Co.

The Cinema Society & Altoids, with the Weinstein Company, packed a small crowd in over the weekend at the Landmark Sunshine Cinema for an intimate screening of Richard Ayoade’s wry coming of age romance, “Submarine.”

Before getting off to a late start (they always do at these things), executive producer Ben Stiller took to the stage to introduce first time feature filmmaker Ayoade as “one of the great self promoters of our time.” Either Stiller was way off base, or Ayoade messed with us, because as soon as the rookie stepped in front of the crowd he went about debunking any high hopes the audience had for his film.

“In terms of expectations, I’d put them to a low gas flame,” he stuttered out amidst a torrent of “um”s and “er”s.

My take? The guy was joking. Evidence: Ayoade is an English comedian best known for his role as Maurice Moss Channel 4’s “The IT Crowd.” That, and the film doesn’t suck. In fact, it’s one of the most charming teen romances to hit in recent memory. Adapted from the novel of the same by Joe Dunthorne, the flick stars newcomer Craig Roberts as a bullied teenager in Wales who struggles to woo the girl of his dreams and save his parent’s crumbling marriage. Ayoade’s script is peppered with witty one liners that pop, but he never loses sight of the simple story at hand.

Those on hand, including Grace Coddington, Noah Baumbach, Jason Schwartzman and Russell Simmons, all seemed to eat it up, laughing at the right moments and belting out collective “aw”s during the film’s more tender moments. They also sweated it out. Upon taking my seat, I overheard a woman sporting a big updo of blonde hair beg a lovely gentleman to blast some cool air. Needless to say, she disrobed (partially) when things started to get toasty.

To cool off and drink, I headed to The Vault at Pfaff nearby for the after party, where Stiller arrived late hand-in-hand with his wife Christine Taylor (“Zoolander”). Among the others that turned heads: Griffin Dunne, Christopher Meloni, Aleksa Palladino (“Boardwalk Empire”), Shenae Grimes (“90210”), Peter Bogdanovich, Charlie Cox, Nora Zehetner, Albert Hammond Jr (The Strokes), Amanda Setton (“Gossip Girl”), Olivier Theyskens, Grace Coddington, Sally Singer, Anna Sui, Erin Heatherton, Jessica Perez, John Demsey, Celine Rattray, Sam Shaffer, Daniel Benedict, Genevieve Jones, Bettina Zilkha, and Cinema Society Founder Andrew Saffir.

Below are some more pictures from the event:

Ben Stiller and Noah Baumbach hanging together at the “Submarine” after party. Photo credit: Clint Spaulding/Patrick McMullan Co.

Tina Chai and Grace Coddington smiling in their seats at the “Submarine” screening. Photo credit: Clint Spaulding/Patrick McMullan Co.

Christine Taylor and Ben Stiller talking to reporters on the red carpet for “Submarine.” Photo credit: Clint Spaulding/Patrick McMullan Co.

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