Jersey Boys Premiere
Oh What a Night!
The Los Angeles Film Festival closed with the premiere of “Jersey Boys,” made more special by the presence of the film’s director, the legendary Clint Eastwood, and the film’s talented cast. Although most were veteran stage actors, for some Jersey Boys was their first film.
Click here to read my story in the “All the Rage” section of the Los Angeles Times. Scroll down to see a few additional comments and photos.
It wasn’t hard to find Eastwood at the after-party, as a crowd quickly formed around him. One need only look for the flashbulbs emanating from one of the VIP enclaves to find the legendary producer/ director/ actor, standing beside his daughter, Alison Eastwood.
Also setting Eastwood apart was his black-piped red jacket, accessorized with a bow tie. His ensemble was an homage to the “Boys” who wore them, or variations thereof, in – as Eastwood pronounced the word at the film’s start – “Joisey.”
There, too, were “Seasons” players Vincent Piazza, Michael Lomenda, Erich Bergen and John Lloyd Young, the film’s Frankie Valli. All had praise for the legendary director, with Young saying that even more than shooting the scenes, he enjoyed the camaraderie on the set, of being treated as a peer by Eastwood and Christopher Walken in their everyday interactions. Young won the 2006 Tony Award for Best Actor in a Musical at the start of the play’s Broadway run.
Looking glamorous in a strapless red sequined gown, Renée Marino – the film’s Mrs. Valli – signed autographs for fans holding out programs, as she passed from the Regal Cinemas at L.A. Live, before joining the others at the rooftop party.
Having seen the theatrical production in London’s West End, I already knew the story of the Jersey boys who started singing under a street lamp before rising to fame with their signature pop tunes and a little help from the Jersey mob.
And yes, the film adaptation has a few clichés, as when someone notes that “big girls don’t cry,” and immediately a song is born. But given Christopher Walken’s turn as the mob boss, the talent of the principal actors and the infectious tunes, I can only applaud Eastwood’s “Jersey Boys.”
Top photo: Director Clint Eastwood with Renée Marino, who plays Mrs. Frankie Valli, at the Jersey Boys premiere (photo, SocietyNewsLA.com)
Second photo: John Lloyd Young, a.k.a. Frankie Valli in the film, at the Jersey Boys premiere (photo, SocietyNewsLA.com)
Third photo: Renée Marino signs programs for fans outside the theater at the Jersey Boys premiere (photo, SocietyNewsLA.com)
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Jersey Boys Premiere
Published June 21, 2014