Edinburgh. Friday, 22 August
There was a sobering start to the day with the press conference for Capturing the Freidmans, attended by Elaine Friedman, wife of Arnold and mother to Jessie, both accused of child molestation.
As she discussed the enquiry which delved deep into her family’s past and the court case that followed, Elaine was obviously very emotional. When asked why she would let a film director disect her life in this way, she explained:
"My primary motivation was to tell the truth. I wanted him (Jarecki) to let people know that Jessie is innocent. And in making the film, Andrew actually found out a lot of things that we didn’t know."
Director Andrew Jarecki was there too to discuss the controversial material brought up by his highly acclaimed documentary about the destruction of the Friedman family.
Jarecki talked of the total incompetence of the police investigation which he believed ‘completely contaminated the case’.
"It was all so badly handled. Someone came up and asked me if it was just another Salem Witch Trial. I said ‘Yeah. A little. Except one of these people involved really is a part-time witch.'"
Camping It Up
Elsewhere the all-singing, all-dancing, high-kicking kids from Camp, a film about a New York performing arts school, were in town. The cast spent the day prancing about doing interviews at the Sheraton and photo calls at the Filmhouse to promote their film. The director Todd Graff was there too - he is one of the graduates of the Fame style summer camp, just like Robert Downey Jnr, Natalie Portman, Jennifer Jason Leigh and Mandy Moore – other famous happy campers.
Still to come; 2 photo calls – (Ameican Splendor & Party Monster) and Party Monster after party.
There was eye candy galore for the photographers this evening when the stars of 16 Years of Alcohol made an appearance before the screening of their movie. Scots actor Kevin McKidd – also starring in Afterlife this year - was keeping the ladies happy. (He seems to have gained a lot of extra female fans during the course of this year’s film fest by all accounts – and I don’t think it’s all simply down to his superlative acting skills…)
McKidd was joined by the stunning Susan Lynch and Irish beauty Laura Fraser. Both glamourous brunettes have the lucky job of playing his girlfriends in the film.
Richard Jobson (perhaps a familiar face for some because of his film reviews on ITV and Sky) has every reason to smile – his film has gone down a storm with the audiences here in his home town.
A bit later there was more excitement for the premiere of Party Monster. Director Fenton Bailey was upstaged slightly by the gloriously camp James St James - wearing his best tartan blazer for the Edinburgh screening. The character of James St James is played in the film by Seth Green (AKA Scott Evil) - with additional assistance from several wardrobes full of dodgy sequin, fur and lycra ensembles.
EIFF guests were invited on to night-club Cabaret Voltaire after the Party Monster screening for the film’s after-party. Club-night Soul Biscuits provided the backdrop and, in the style of the hard-core clubbers portrayed in the film, guests got down with their bad self to the beats of DJ’s Gino and Nasty P. There was also entertainment from those B-Boy breakdancers, Random Aspekts.