Strut, pose, strut, pose . . . there's a je ne sais quois about red carpet welcomes that spark the inner celeb in everyone, particularly when a row of paparazzi await for the perfect attitude to capture a memorable image.
Inside, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston played host to the opening celebration of the fifth Houston Cinema Arts Festival on Wednesday, an event that greeted a coterie of film luminaries, notable artists, Pulitzer Prize-winning playwrights, sports VIPs and actors of repute.
Following an exclusive reception for select guests that included festival board chair Franci Crane and hubby Jim, Phoebe Tudor, Bob and Gracie Cavnar and Houston Texans Owen Daniels and wife Angela and Duane Brown and wife Devon, the stage was set for the Houston premiere of Cutie and the Boxer, a moving documentary about the perseverance of the human spirit.
In the house with film director, Houston-born and St. John's School graduate Zachary Heinzerling were film subjects, artists Noriko and Ushio Shinohara, whose candid wit and unapologetic honesty charmed the standing-room throng. Despite personal and professional strife, the Shinoharas unfaltering love for one another was evident in the many humorous unscripted moments during a question-and-answer session.
Smooth jazz courtesy of the Grateful Geezers, a spread of finger foods and an open bar morphed the museum into a classy dance party where avant-garde filmmaker Jonas Mekas, director Barbara Hammer, Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright and Homeland star Tracy Letts, musician/animator Jeremy Rourke and Colombian photographer Juan Manuel Echavarría — and the list goes on and on — mingled with movie buffs.
In the crowd with executive director Trish Rigdon were Bobbie Allen, Bridget Monthy, Jared Crane, Krystal and Garrett Thompson, Jake Rubin, Sharon Adams, Rick Ferguson, Alfred Cervantes, Pat Breen, Michael Zilkha and fashion designer David Peck with wife Michelle Phillips.