When I first heard that the Tribeca Film Festival was screening a restoration of Martin Scorsese’s The King of Comedy, I knew I had to get tickets. I was lucky enough to receive seat and even managed to sit a few rows away from the stage. My hope was that either actor Robert De Niro or Scorsese would be there to present the film, but not only did they both show up but comedian Jerry Lewis as well.
Scorsese is my second favorite director after Stanley Kubrick and De Niro is my favorite actor, so I was very excited to see them both. After the screening ended, there was a twenty minute Q and A with the three. Scorsese and De Niro described the process of making the movie and described it coming off the shoes of Raging Bull. Scorsese also described the movie not as a comedy but as a character study, comparing it to some of his other work. Lewis told a few jokes that had the entire audience laughing.
The digital restoration of the movie is simply stunning and one of the best I’ve seen, rivaling even the Criterion Collection ones. Using the original camera negative, the restoration was meticulously done with all the colors being vibrant. The blu-ray edition should come out in a few months and I’ll be sure to preorder it.
While I did not have enough time to get Scorsese or De Niro to sign my copy of Taxi Driver, going to the screening easily the coolest movie-related thing I’ve done ever. Seeing my cinema idols on stage was a dream for me and was a great opportunity.