F.: Ellen Kuras; Mo.: Damián Rodríguez, David Tedeschi; Op.: Patrick Capone, Jack Donnelly, Carlos Omar Guerra, Chris Norr, David S. Tuttman; Ass. Op.: Sebastián Almeida, Richard Gioia, Daniel Keck, Dave Regan, Frank Rinato, Linda Slater; Mu.: Joe Rudge; Su.: Felix Andrew, Danny Michael, Peter Miller, Mark Roy; Int.: Fran Lebowitz, da materiale di repertorio: James Baldwin, William F. Buckley, Truman Capote, Pablo Casals, Candy Darling, Serge Gainsbourg, Oscar Levant, Thelonious Monk, Toni Morrison, Conan O’Brien, Eugene O’Neill, Dorothy Parker, S.J. Perelman, Pablo Picasso, Cole Porter, Andy Warhol, Gore Vidal; Prod.: Margaret Bodde, Graydon Carter, Fran Lebowitz, Martin Scorsese per HBO; Pri. pro.: 22 novembre 2010 – HDCam.
“I have way too frequently for my own moral comfort been asked if I was an only child.” – Fran Lebowitz.
Wise, brilliant and funny, Fran Lebowitz hit the New York literary scene in the early 70’s when Andy Warhol hired the unknown scribe to write a column for Interview magazine. Today, she’s an acclaimed author with legions of fans who adore her acerbic wit. This feature-length documentary weaves together extemporaneous monologues featuring Fran Lebowitz with archival footage. The effect is a portrait of Fran’s sardonic worldview and experiences.
Directed in the inimitable and energetic style of Scorsese’s early documentaries Italian American and American Boy, Public Speaking captures the author in conversation at New York’s Waverly Inn, in an onstage discussion with longtime friend and celebrated writer Toni Morrison and on the streets of New York City. Lebowitz offers insights on timely issues such as gender, race and gay rights, as well as her pet peeves, including celebrity culture, smoking bans, tourists and strollers. Gender, she says, is “a very big piece of luck,” adding, “Any white gentile straight male who is not President of the United States failed.” Reflecting on the election of Barack Obama, she calls racism a “fantasy of superiority” adding “a fantasy can end, you know. It probably won’t, but it can”. On the subject of aging, Lebowitz says, “At a certain point, the worst picture taken of you when you were 25 is better than the best picture taken of you when you are 45”. Of her beloved city, she says, “New York was not better [in the 70’s] because there was more crime. It was better because it was cheaper”. Lebowitz’s eclectic career has included stints writing for Interview and Mademoiselle magazines and serving as a contributing editor for Vanity Fair. She is also the author of two bestselling collections of essays, Metropolitan Life (1978) and Social Studies (1981), and the children’s book Mr. Chas and Lisa Sue Meet the Pandas (1994).