Vote Audrey: Rachel Antonoff Sees the Future, and We Have Our First Female President

Left, campaign imagery courtesy of & Other Stories; Middle and right, party photos by Shawn Brackbill

Rachel Antonoff couldn’t have known how timely her campaign-based collection for the collaboration series with & Other Stories would feel at its launch party last night.

Not even a month after Hillary Clinton’s announcement, Antonoff fêted the release of her collection (officially in stores next Thursday, May 12), Wednesday night in Soho.

“We started working on this more than a year ago at this point,” Antonoff said, “we presented them with three different umbrella themes.” But the campaign motif was the winning story. The clothes are simultaneously modern and retro-inspired–think seersucker suits and railroad striped jeans and culottes, complemented by a to-the-point tee that reads “We Try Harder,” and a crewneck sweatshirt emblazoned simply with “It’s Time.”

Watch Vote Audrey here:

Thinking back to Cecily Strong‘s request at the White House Correspondents Dinner that journalists “solemnly swear…not to talk about Hillary’s appearance… because that is not journalism,” Rachel discussed the catch-22 that is the question of what women in politics wear. “It’s such a bigger question,” she said, “I’m constantly trying to figure out that balance. It’s so difficult to feel like you want to have equal rights and you don’t want to be treated a certain way because you’re a girl–you don’t want it to be assumed that you like certain things that you like because you’re a girl–but thenthere are certain things people might assume you like because you’re a girl, that you DO like, and it actually is almost anti-feminist to turn your back on those things, just because they’re the obvious–you don’t want to seem like a typical, whatever,” she said, echoing the confusion and frustration of a double standard we often feel when asking ourselves these questions.

“When it comes to politics, either we cover what the men and the women are wearing, or we don’t cover either…That’s the only way to do it. Granted, I mean, who’s gonna give a shit about what the men are wearing, but you just have to do it,” Antonoff concluded.

As for the political women whose style inspired the capsule collection, Antonoff noted that she’d been looking at pictures of Jackie Onassis and Carolyn Besette-Kennedy. “There’s just some really great style linked to the Kennedy’s but also just Americana, or patriotism, in general. We imagined it all kind of happening in this campaign office.”

Bringing that vision to life is Lena Dunham‘s vision of it all. It’s a dreamy four minute sequence which moves from Zoe Kazan‘s hopeful but rejected neighborhood canvassing efforts to a cheerful, and more importantly, hopeful, daydream of becoming the first female president, complete with choreography and a diverse, but all female group of judge/backup dancers.

Of the video, Antonoff said, “One of the many great things about Lena, she’s pretty great at extracting exactly what you didn’t even know you wanted from somewhere inside your brain and making it real. So she wrote the script completely by herself, directed…she’s one of the only people that I feel totally comfortable handing over the reigns to, like 100%, because I’m a little bit of a control freak, but she did a perfect job and it’s exactly what we hoping for.”

Dunham chimed in on Twitter, “Soon, this film won’t be total fiction. MADAM PRESIDENT 2016.” Though Dunham’s directorial/writing skills and Kazan’s acting chops are swell, Antonoff’s cheery and optimistic clothes are the true stars.


A sampling of Antonoff’s collection which will hit stores on May 12

Exclusive: See Paul Dano on the Set of His Directorial Debut, ‘Franklin and Matilda’

For a man of twenty-six who can’t grow a full beard, Paul Dano has checked a lot of items off the career to-do list: Appear in a Broadway show at age twelve with George C. Scott and Charles Durning; make on-screen man-boy love to Brian Cox; star in a Lifetime Original movie about teen pregnancy (Too Young To Be a Dad—a classic of the genre); play AJ’s friend on the Sopranos; steal the show with a mostly non-speaking role in an Oscar-winning film; fight Daniel Day Lewis in a bowling alley in another Oscar-winning film. Check. Check. Check. Check. You think he’d be satisfied, content to sit on the couch with a beer, his beautiful and incredibly talented girlfriend, actress/playwright Zoe Kazan, nestled to his chest. A lot of the time he can be found doing just that, but right now he wants to direct. So direct it is. Yesterday, I stopped by the set of Franklin and Matilda, Dano’s latest idée fixe, to snap some shots and check out the scene.

Franklin and Matilda, which Dano also wrote, is a short film shot in super16 black and white starring Kazan and Eddie Redmayne (who won the Tony this year for his performance in Red) as two lovers captured at various moments over the arc of their relationship. A family affair—Maya Kazan, Zoe’s sister, is producing the film, and Paul’s sister Sarah is also working on set—the gang is currently shooting at various locations in and around the Cobble Hill section of Brooklyn, where Dano and Kazan live. They filmed a scene at the restaurant People’s Republic of Brooklyn on Smith St, and another in a friend’s bathroom.


The crew, which consists mostly of former Wesleyan students, friends of Maya Kazan, buzzed in the confined space of a Brooklyn Heights apartment, hanging lights, adjusting camera angles, and generally looking busy. Dano, sporting a French-inspired moustache, paced the set giving quiet instruction. Zoe Kazan lounged on a couch, catching some much needed chill-out time between shots as her sister juggled cellphones and paperwork and light fixtures, all the while smiling and exuding an impressive calm amidst the set’s chaos. It looked like fun.

It turns out Dano’s frenchy-trash-stache is no accident. “I wrote the film after watching Antoine et Collette, The Trauffaut short,” Paul told me. The film takes inspiration from the French New Wave, as well as quintessential New York directors Woody Allen and Jim Jarmusch. Indeed, there are nods to the dry wit and minimalist aesthetic of early Jarmusch films like Stranger Than Paradise in Franklin and Matilda. “I wanted to shoot something in NYC in black and white. I’ve never had the chance to act in something black and white,” he said. “So I had to direct something instead.”



Where Celebs Go Out: America Ferrera, Harvey Keitel, Hope Davis

At the premiere of Our Family Wedding:

● AMERICA FERRERA – “My favorite restaurant of the moment is Broadway East, on the Lower East Side.” ● CHARLIE MURPHY – “I’ve been going to this Mexican restaurant in New Jersey. I think it’s called El Torito, whatever. That’s one of them. I go to so many restaurants. This is what I want to explain, so no one’s insulted. I’m on the road 48 weeks of the year in different towns, and I go to a lot of restaurants, so to ask me what my favorite restaurant is, is kind of a hard question to answer. I like going to Baja Fresh in L.A.” ● GRETCHEN ROSSI – “In Newport Beach, it’s Flemings. It’s a steakhouse, and I eat the steak and potatoes and everything that you can imagine on the menu. But I just eat small portions, so that you get a taste of everything.”

● LANCE GROSS – “I love Tao here in New York. I don’t get to New York a lot, but the Cafeteria. I love the Cafeteria. I do all the nightclubs. I don’t even know the names. I just go into them.” ● REGINA KING – “Right now, I’m really loving Osteria Mozza in L.A., Mario Batali’s restaurant. It’s so funny because where he opened was a place in L.A. that there’s been four restaurants that tried to make it there; came; spent a lot of money; closed down. And he has been booming, banging with business, and rightfully so. So, if you go and get the oxtail ragu — oh, my God! Hah! It is so good, and mmmm, the pizza next door is even better, because it’s Nancy Silverton from La Brea Bakery making the dough. I love to eat, clearly.” ● PRAS – “Geez! Right now it’s gotta be Dylan Prime. That’s in my neighborhood. Every time I’m out of town, I always take a trip back to Dylan. I feel like I’ve landed back home. Do you like steak? I love — I’m a big meat eater, despite all the things they tell you about eating charred beef.”

At the opening of A Behanding in Spokane on Broadway:

● HARVEY KEITEL – “A candy store in Brighton Beach, in Brooklyn. It was called Ali Baba & the 40 Thieves.” ● ANTHONY MACKIE – “Hey, book that is black! I love to go down to STK. One of my very favorite restaurants is Three Sisters, on Madison and 124th — the best Caribbean food you can find in New York. ● JENNIFER MORRISON – “I have had no chance to discover that yet because we just opened last night. Where in L.A.? I love Madeo restaurant. We eat there all the time. Dan Tana’s, some of the usual spots. I’m a huge fan of spaghetti and meat sauce. It’s my weakness, anywhere I go.” ● ZOE KAZAN – “I love your magazine! I haven’t been going to a lot of bars or clubs lately. I’ve been going to theater hangouts, like the West Bank Cafe or Bar Centrale. In my neighborhood, I love Buttermilk Channel, which is a restaurant in Cobble Hill or Frankie’s 457. I like the fried chicken at Buttermilk Channel.” ● MARTIN MCDONAGH – “Angus McIndoe.” ● HUGH JACKMAN – “Oh, c’mon!”

● DANA IVEY – “I don’t want to give it away ’cause too many people will go there. I don’t want to say because it’ll be infiltrated by everybody, and I won’t get a seat! No, but Joe Allen’s is always good. That’s one of my faves. Oh, they have this great, great salad that I really, really like — trevisano, something, I can’t remember, but that’s what I get every time.” ● HOPE DAVIS –Buttermilk Channel in Brooklyn.” ● JOAN HAMBURG – “You mean in this neighborhood? I love to go to Orso’s. Oh, I like a lot of places. I like Blue Hill downtown. I got a list!” ● SARAH PAULSON – “One of them is a secret. I don’t want anybody else to know about it, so I won’t talk about that place. I love a place called Café Cluny, on 12th Street and West 4th Street, down in the Village. Any favorite dish? The burger and the Cluny. It’s a giant martini, which is always really good. I’m, kind of, like a person who only goes to places that are in the neighborhood I happen to be standing in, in the moment, which is what’s so great about New York — you’re bound to turn around and hit something great.” ● MARCIA GAY HARDEN – “Oh, God, we never go out. Honestly, we don’t go out. Our living room, our kitchen, our dining room. What about in L.A.? Oh, God, I wouldn’t say L.A. before New York! I couldn’t possibly say L.A. before New York. Okay, wait! We like Settepani in Harlem. We love Orso. We love Orso.” ● STACY KEACH – “It’s a tough one, isn’t it? There’s so many. Joe’s restaurant in Venice. Everything is good, but I, particularly, like steak ‘n eggs, yeah. In New York, there’s so many wonderful restaurants, and we just got here. And every time I come back to New York, I discover new places, so I’m hesitant to give you names of places.” ● PABLO SCHREIBER – “The old standards are the — what’s the place over here on 46th where we go after the show? It’s right above Joe Allen’s. Yeah, I, always forget the name of it ’cause they have no sign. [That would be Bar Centrale. -ed] That’s my favorite place for after-dinner drinks. I went to a great Greek restaurant last night, called Molyvos, on 7th Avenue between 55th and 56th. That place was pretty delicious. I had the whole fish. It was a black sea bass, and they did it perfectly. I’m a father of a 16th-month-old kid, so I don’t get out much these days.” ● DAVID HYDE PIERCE – “No, I don’t have any. I don’t have a lot of places to talk about like that.” ● LILY RABE – “I love Maialino. It’s in the Gramercy Park Hotel. It just opened. It’s amazing. Yes, it’s really good. And I love Café Cluny. Morandi. Those are my favorite places to eat. And the Breslin is also really incredible. The Breslin has this pork belly that’s one of the most memorable things I’ve ever eaten in the city.” ● JULIE TAYMORE –Craft, Maialino, Bobby Flay’s restaurant Mesa Grill.” ● TOM WAITS – “Oh, gee, I eat at home. I eat at home.” ● PAUL DANO – “Eton’s — it’s a dumpling place in Brooklyn. Po. Franny’s — all Brooklyn.” ● ANTHONY ANDERSON – “I really don’t hang out much in New York because of the work schedule that we have. But when I do, I find myself having a drink at Tillman’s. My favorite eatery would have to be Abe & Arthur’s.” ● GRIFFIN DUNNE – “I’m mostly upstate these days, so I’ve got little holes up there that I hit, in Duchess County. What do I want to plug? Gigi’s, an Italian restaurant — very, very good. I think that’s in Rhinebeck, yeah.”

Movie Reviews: ‘Greenberg’, ‘She’s Out of My League’, ‘Happy Tears’

Happy Tears – We grow old. It goes without saying, and yet, we don’t say it much. Happy Tears contends with this inevitability. Parker Posey and Demi Moore play sisters who return home to care for their increasingly delusional father (Rip Torn). Mitchell Lichtenstein, director of vagina dentata classic Teeth, honors his own father, late pop-art star Roy Lichtenstein, by crafting whimsical fantasy sequences that mimic his work. Posey and Moore aren’t always believable as kin and, poetically, it’s left to the old folks to steal the show: Torn’s peculiar brand of crazy — unlike his character — never gets old, while Ellen Barkin is downright resplendent as an aging sexpot who claims to be his nurse. (Think: Elle Woods in 30 years, rocking a prop stethoscope.) — Eiseley Tauginas

Shutter Island – In the latest offering from Scorsese-DiCaprio, the legendary director quells his epic ambitions (The Aviator, Gangs of New York) and goes straight for the jugular (Goodfellas, The Departed). The ageless DiCaprio plays Teddy Daniels, a U.S. Marshal sent to investigate the disappearance of an inmate (Emily Mortimer) at an insane asylum. Less cerebral than what we’ve come to expect from the creator of Taxi Driver, it’s still a thrill to watch him revel in B-movie jolts. Anchored by strong performances from a cast that includes Mark Ruffalo and Ben Kingsley, Shutter Island mines suspense thriller tropes all the way down to the twist ending. It’s a popcorn movie from a master. — Ben Barna

She’s Out of My League – Following Judd Apatow’s not-so-secret recipe — equal parts fart and heart — is harder than it looks. Director Jim Field Smith serves up the story of a dorky string bean (Jay Baruchel, an Apatow protégé) who lands himself a Maxim-ready dream girl (newcomer Alice Eve), and it doesn’t go down easy. Peppered with recycled ingredients, League features the stereotypical abusive quarterback brother, trashy ex-girlfriend and obligatory body-hair-removal scene. There’s even a final breathless run to the airport. Baruchel is charming and self-deprecating enough, but he can’t seem to figure out why his curly-haired best friend isn’t Seth Rogen. — B.B.

The Exploding Girl – Let’s just come right out and say it: despite its title, not much happens in The Exploding Girl. (Still, don’t Google the title, ever.) It’s a languid, dreamy two-hour nap, in the best possible way. Zoe Kazan commands each scene as a college co-ed whiling away her summer break. Torn between an existing relationship with her distracted boyfriend and new feelings for her best friend, she captures with glorious lethargy the stumbling hesitance of young love. With the exception of her character’s epilepsy, which does give the film a streak of Degrassi, there are no histrionics, just plenty of minor disappointments, quiet kindnesses and inarticulate dialogue. — Nick Haramis

Greenberg– Do overgrown man-boys inspire your compassion or ire? Do you empathize with lost, emotionally stunted, over-privileged, brutally honest 40-somethings — or do they make you want to throw popcorn at the screen? These are some of the questions raised by Greenberg, the latest therapy session from The Squid and The Whale director Noah Baumbach [see page 48]. The film stars an extremely convincing Ben Stiller as Roger Greenberg. A bumbling, neurotic New Yorker with an ambition deficit, he returns to Los Angeles to behave awkwardly while dating his brother’s much younger dog-walker Florence, the immensely appealing mumblecore queen Greta Gerwig. True to Baumbach form, the film feels oppressively honest. — Willa Paskin

The New Legacy: Zoe Kazan

In 2001, Zoe Kazan enrolled in her first semester at Yale. One week later, the Twin Towers were attacked and the granddaughter of the late filmmaker Elia Kazan first encountered the baggage that comes with being part of a legacy. “A reporter called me and said she wanted to talk about the freshman experience right after 9/11,” says the 26-year-old actress, sighing into her cup of black coffee. “But when we met, she immediately started asking me questions about my grandpa.” Although she has been familiar with Hollywood from birth—her parents, Nicholas Kazan and Robin Swicord, are both screenwriters—acting has never been about privilege for Kazan, whose first major film role called for her to disrobe in front of Leonardo DiCaprio in Revolutionary Road. “In our house, if you wanted to act, it meant you wanted to work,” she says. “It didn’t mean you wanted to get your hair done for a living.”

As for the craft itself, Kazan explains its draw. “Finding ways to deflect your pain?” she says. “I get that. I live in an escapist world. There isn’t a whole lot of time where I get to sit around being Zoe, and I think there’s a reason for that.”

But being Zoe doesn’t seem all that bad. The actress appeared in five films this year—among them, Richard Linklater’s Me and Orson Welles, starring Zac Efron and Claire Danes, Rebecca Miller’s The Private Lives of Pippa Lee alongside Robin Wright and as Meryl Streep’s daughter in the Nancy Meyers’ comedy It’s Complicated—and currently lives in the sleepy Brooklyn neighborhood of Carroll Gardens with her boyfriend, actor Paul Dano. “My taste in men isn’t exactly beefcake Americana,” she says, adding Steve Martin and Philip Seymour Hoffman to her list of celebrity crushes. She and Dano met on the off-Broadway, Ethan Hawke-directed play Things We Want, and recently filmed Kelly Reichardt’s Meek’s Cutoff together, but Kazan says, “If he did something else, I would love him just the same.”

Having grown up on the periphery of Hollywood, did you approach it, at the beginning of your acting career, with any baggage? It meant something more when I used to say I wanted to make a movie. I think that my parents expected me to take it more seriously. If I said I wanted to be a writer, it meant something specific, not some amorphous thing. Wanting to be an actor meant I wanted to work—as an actor—not get my hair done for a living. In terms of what I bring to the table, it’s different than someone who didn’t grow up in the business. It’s not like I’m jaded, per se, but I think that I have a more realistic view about what fame is, how I feel when people praise me in reviews, and how I react when a blog says something mean about me. I’m much less likely to pay very much mind to that kind of stuff, because the goal of the culture doesn’t seem to be anything except entropy: “Lets burn out a star!”

I wouldn’t think that growing up around your grandfather, Elia Kazan, would prepare you for the pitfalls of young Hollywood today. For one thing, I’m not interested in going out and living a young Hollywood lifestyle. The other part of that is, especially after watching what he went through with the whole brouhaha with his honorary Oscar, I feel like that was a real lesson to me, in terms of people building you up and tearing you down. People want to have an opinion about public figures. It seems very clear to me that there is a price to fame, which, might be foreign to somebody whose parents are dentists in the Midwest.

I also think it’s interesting, too, when young actors are congratulated for not turning into Lindsay Lohan. The fact that anyone would devolve into that of personality is absurd in the first place, but the fact that people are praised for not becoming that way is also equally preposterous. I guess it depends on what your goal is as an actor. If you want to be really famous for nothing, and be photographed places, I think that that’s a very different goal than wanting to have enough power to be able to do your work.

But that’s also a part of the business, being seen walking down red carpets. You’re right. I do have to attend openings, get dressed up and not look like a complete slob, but I guess I don’t think of that aspect as being a compromise to my work. It’s an obligation. Plus, I don’t mind getting dressed up and having my picture taken.

I read somewhere that your parents told you to steer clear of dating actors. How did that work out for you? [Laughs.] They say it’s easiest to meet people at work. My experience hasn’t been that much different. I feel like I’ve kept a pretty good balance of friends from the outside of work and friends that I’ve made at work. There are a handful of my friends—Caitlin Fitzgerald, who’s also in It’s Complicated with me, Carey Mulligan, who I did The Seagull with and Peter Dinklage, who I did a play with—they’re like my sisters and my brothers. In terms of dating actors, you know, the stereotype of an actor is a terrible thing: they’re maniacal and obsessed with their looks. But most actors I know aren’t really like that. And I know that I would love my boyfriend now [Paul Dano] just the same if he did something else. But it’s lovely to be able to come home and be like, I had a really tough time with this scene.

You began acting on stage, which is where you met Paul, no? It was a complete fluke that I started in theatre and so it’s sort of funny to me that I’m perceived as a theatre actress, because that was never the plan. But I love the theatre, playing someone every night for months on end, and it playing differently each time. I love being in front of an audience and having that visceral experience. Their breath! Are they cold, or hot, or are they drunk because it’s a Saturday night, or bored because it’s a matinee and it’s raining outside? But in film, I love that you’re not responsible for moving a story forward. It’s just you and the scene. That’s an intoxicating feeling.

Have you had, up until now, a role that has spoken to you more than others? Maureen in Revolutionary Road was very far away from who I am as a person. But every girl knows what it’s like to be with a guy you know is bad good news but you move forward with it anyways. There’s a sort of self-loathing there, and the enjoyment of the affair. I played Masha in The Seagull this fall—she’s so angry, and abuses drugs to escape—I’ve never had a substance abuse problem, but I understand the psychology behind finding ways to deflect your pain. I get that. I live in an escapist world. I get to go to work and pretend that I’m somebody else. There isn’t a whole lot of time where I get to sit around being Zoe, and I think there’s a reason for that.

Can I ask you a question? What’s up with the Nia Vardalos movie, I Hate Valentine’s Day? Oh, man.

I haven’t seen it. I haven’t seen it, either.

It seems out of place. Everybody has a movie that they might look back on and not be as happy with. I did that after Revolutionary Road. Basically, I went from that movie into nine months of theater. So when I got out of that nine months, I did The Private Lives of Pippa Lee, Me And Orson Welles, I Hate Valentine’s Day, and The Exploding Girl

Sorry to cut you off, but I searched “exploding girl” on YouTube to watch the trailer… thanks very much for that. Ah, that’s terrible! But I’m really proud of that one. Anyway, I really shouldn’t have done that Nia Vardalos movie, not because of how it turned out, but because I needed a break.

It must be really nice to get to that point, when you can be a little more discerning about the projects you choose. My parents said something to me, which I probably should have listened to a little bit more. They said, “If you ever need help financially, we’ll give it to you because we don’t want you to take something really bad just to have money.” I wouldn’t have done that anyway, but I do think there is a great luxury in not having to take a bad movie. I’m just getting there, and it feels great.


Top photo: Kazan wears dress by D&G. Ring by D. Roach. Bottom photo: Dress by Oscar De La Renta. Shoes by Gucci. Photography by Billy Kidd. Styling by Wilson Mathews III. Hair by Sarah Potempa @ The Wall Group. Makeup by Talia Shobrook @ The Wall Group.

The Private Life of Zoe Kazan

26-year-old actress and writer Zoe Kazan was raised among Hollywood types. Her parents, Nicholas Kazan and Robin Swicord, are both successful screenwriters, and her grandfather is the late film legend Elia Kazan. She’s no stranger to celebrity, awards ceremonies and red carpets, but the Yale graduate has eschewed West Coast glamour to live in Brooklyn’s Carroll Gardens neighborhood with her boyfriend, actor Paul Dano. Kazan’s latest film, The Private Lives of Pippa Lee, in which she plays the daughter of Robin Wright’s title character, opened this past weekend. It seemed fitting then to ask Kazan, who also stars in the upcoming Nancy Meyer’s film It’s Complicated as Meryl Streep’s daughter, about family.

What about your character in The Private Lives of Pippa Lee appealed to you? She is so unlike who I am in my relationship with my mother, but there was one scene in the book, which isn’t in the movie, where she goes to an ice cream shop with her mom as a young child. There’s another child at the shop whose mother can’t afford any ice cream and she gives the kid her cone in a very angry way — really furious — and I just latched onto that idea. She’s a person who comes from an incredible world of privilege and she leaves it. She wants her mother’s love really terribly and she doesn’t know how to accept her mother or have her mother know her, and I think that every girl understands that. Also, for me, Robin [Wright, who plays her mother in the film] is one of the great actresses.

There’s one moving scene in particular, in which you unexpectedly break down in front of your mother. It’s one of those moments when you see your parent as a person, not as your parent. I don’t want to give too much away, but after the death of her father, she says to her mom, I’m not crying about daddy. She’s facing a future where her mother is her only parent and she says, I want to be your friend. It’s sort of why I took the part, because of that scene. My relationship with my mother is a lot less complicated than that but I, too, have that feeling sometimes: I’m sorry for the things that I’ve put you through.

What has your relationship been like with your parents? Well, I think for people like Eva Amurri and Colin Hanks and Mamie Gummer — for a lot of people whose parents are famous actors — they have a different kind of battle than I do because they are dealing the expectation of what their parent did versus what they do. Since my parents are writers, I didn’t have that.

What about the expectation that you get handed opportunities more readily? What a movie star makes versus what a Hollywood screenwriter makes is a totally different story, as if the power difference. I’ve never asked my parents for help but I’m thinking if I had, they wouldn’t have been able to help me that much. I really don’t think of myself as a legacy, even though I guess I am. My grandfather was obviously in the business, too, but it doesn’t seem like a reality to me.

It’s something that most journalists emphasize. Why do you think that is? It’s a funny thing to me, especially because my childhood was fairly non-Hollywood. My parents would take their work up to Washington State for four months of the year and we would live up there with no other little friends, basically playing dress-up in the woods. And in L.A., my parents cooked dinner at night and we had a nanny during the day. Many kids who grew up in L.A. in upper middle class families probably had a similar childhood. I think it’s fascinating to people who live on the outside of it, maybe?

Surely it was a unique experience visiting film sets when you were a child? My parents are both screenwriters, so I’ve been on lots of sets with them. I visited the set of Enough and met J. LO. The one I remember most was the set of Little Women. And I went to school with Meryl Streep’s kids and Dustin Hoffman’s kids, so it’s not like I was a stranger to Hollywood. But the strangest Hollywood experience I’ve had so far was at the Oscars because of the people protesting the nonsense.

Were you fully aware of your grandfather’s celebrity before he passed away? I was 20, which is old enough to appreciate that kind of stuff, but I didn’t really talk to him too much about his movies. I’ve never read his autobiography. There are parts of me that don’t really want to know the part of my grandpa that was really famous. It would be like treating him like a famous person. It was so much better to have him just be my grandpa. After he died, I had a wonderful relationship with Karl Malden [who starred in Elia Kazan’s A Streetcar Named Desire and On The Waterfront] and he told me wonderful stories about my grandpa. I was so happy to hear that from Karl because he was never anybody to me but my grandfather’s friend. Of course I’m fascinated by that era, and it was an amazing time in the theater in New York and there’s a real romance around what they were doing in the city at the time. Obviously I’m curious about it, but on a professional level rather than a personal level.

Photo by Billy Kidd