Thursday, August 21, 2008

It's A Case of Scarlett Fever

Roger Durling
Executive Director
Santa Barbara Film Festival
General Delivery
Santa Barbara, CA

Dear Roger:

I hope you're having a good summer. You know, when things seem to get a little slow on the News-Press front, my thoughts often turn to the Santa Barbara Film Festival.

In the two years I've been covering the film fest, you've never failed to come through with the big names. Thanks to you, I've gotten a chance to interview Al Gore, get straightened out by Jennifer Hudson, and party in the V.I.P. room with Heather Graham.

(I've also gotten brushed off by Cate Blanchette, and I got a taste of what it must be like to try to guard Kobe Bryant on a basketball court, given the way Angelina Jolie blew past me on the red carpet last year.)

I know the announcements of who the honorees will be for next year's film fest are still a couple of months away. I was hoping that it's not too late to lobby you to include one of my personal favorites.

I was wondering, do you think you could try to land Scarlett Johansson?

I skipped spending an evening on the sofa watching the Olympics Tuesday night to go see her in the new Woody Allen film, Vicky Cristina Barcelona. No regrets about that decision!

(And by the way, that movie will do more to promote Spanish tourism than the 1992 summer Olympics ever did.)

One of her co-stars in the film is your buddy Javier Bardem, with whom you hit it off so well when you interviewed him at last year's film fest.

I've been a fan of Scarlett ever since Lost In Translation. Heck, I even went to see her in Girl with a Pearl Earring, which was like watching paint dry in Holland.

I took a pass on catching her in Eight Legged Freaks; I have a bad case of Arachnophobia you know, but my daughter dragged me along so I could hear her voiceover in The SpongeBob Squarepants Movie.

Your tribute director, Paul Fagen, would have a field day putting together clips of her from those films as well as Match Point, (my personal favorite of all of her films) The Black Dahlia and The Other Boleyn Girl.

And if the welcoming committee needs someone to show her around town, well, I know a guy. Just think, Scarlett at Palmieri’s!

I don't want to put any pressure on you, but perhaps you could think about it. And if you're not wild about Scarlett, what do you think of Penelope Cruz?