Friday, May 15, 2009

Alanis Obomsawin

I spent most of yesterday in the company of Alanis, who is probably our most distinguished guest at Origins. I picked her up from her hotel at 12, and we went together to the very plush residence of Canada's Deputy High Commissioner, for a lunch to celebrate the 70th birthday of the National Film Board. Tom Perlmutter, the head of the NFB, was there with his wife - and there were other filmmakers and Festival directors, plus Simon from Canada House. In the thick of all the Festival mayhem, it was very nice to pause for a couple of hours and lap up some praise for what we've done!

I squeezed in an afternoon at the office before the screening of Alanis's film Kanehsatake at the British Museum. This is THE film I've wanted to show at the Festival, ever since I first saw it in Montreal in September. Fantastic to be able to do it with Alanis present. Or rather, present for the beginning and the end.... during the screening she whizzed off to Canada House in a taxi to yet another drinks reception, and then whizzed back again to us to do a Q&A with her usual incisiveness.

After that, she took us all for a drink, and was still partying away when I left at 10.30. I find it hard to believe that this woman is 76....

Alanis is giving The Origins Lecture at Riverside Studios tonight at 6.30. Promises to be amazing.

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