Imagine my surprise when I heard that "City Island" opened last weekend in...the former USSR? Really? Before America gets to see it in wide release, the Russkie's do?

But--delight of delights--it turns out that our Bronx based family comedy seems to have a fairly universal appeal. Below I pasted a blackberry-ish communication from our Foreign Sales company, who seems genuinely delighted with the business we did on opening weekend in...the former USSR?

Subject: FYI: City Island - Russia - first weekend BO
admissions: 37,133

They are releasing with 120 prints or about, this is a very good start!!!

Imagine--a hit in Kiev! A sell-out in Moscow! A smash in St. Petersberg (?)...To celebrate, why not post my favorite number from the only true Cold War musical, "Silk Stockings"--music and lyrics by Cole Porter, natch. The song is the "Red Blues" and the damsel who kicks it into gear is, of course Cyd Charisee. The number is magnificently staged and directed by Rouben Mamoulian--a Russian himself and the versatile stage director of "Porgy and Bess" and "Oklahoma" as well as the director of movies such as "Love Me Tonight", "Blood and Sand", "Golden Boy" etc. Mamoulian, by the way, would be a good subject for one of my "Auteur Theater" posts--though not a writer, he truly did leave his thumbprint on every one of his movies (and he didn't make a lot of them). I'm currently working on a post about Robert Rossen ("The Hustler", "All The Kings Men") and will have it up momentarily (screenplay writing has been occupying my time, thus the paucity of posting). Last night, had the opportunity over dinner in West Hollywood with Peter Bogdanovich to discuss Rossen, as well as the truly sublime Jean Renoir. Peter didn't cotten much to Rossen, but positively glowed when discussing Renoir--the ultimate auteur of course and one of those spirits who it seems nobody has a negative word for. I'm sure there are some good Renoir interviews on the YT--once I come up for air I'll dig in...

Hang in, dear and loyal "City-Islanders." More on our movie--and forgotten auteurs--in a minute. Now here's that number I promised...

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  1. Ray, the expression is, "We killed them in Kiev and mashed them in Moscow". great news- pvc

  2. Raymond....can't wait till it gets to Siam Stations 20 or so screens in BANGKOK, Thailand! (Actually, since indy films such as "BRUNO" may never get here with the screens dominated by the Harry Potters and Transformers-2 crowds....I'll keep on eye for your newest Writer/Directoral work-of-art; CITY ISLAND from my "DVD-Guy" Mr. Boy...who even managed to get me a copy of "Once Upon a Time in the West" in pristine condition for $B 100 Thai Baht...(about $3 USD)....just wrote you a lengthy post on my new Bio-Pic Treatment that some MAJOR Prod. Houses are getting excited over--"MONTY & MARLON"...check out my query to you on your FACEBOOK page...just sent it...wishing you all the best, Don Raymondo...and keep up the GREAT WORK! NEVER, EVER, say DIE! A kindred spirit from the other side of the planet---Alan J.

  3. Raymond Now that is cool.Wow Russia
    man that is neat wow.

    Silk stockings I just loved that Cyd Charisee when I was a
    young guy...Plus standing by the Piano Peter lorre what fun always
    watching him. Would love to hear the dinner table scene in Russian.

  4. Now i'm jealous of the Russians :). But glad to hear it is doing well...looks like everyone can relate to and enjoy it. More for us fans coming soon? Can't wait!!!

  5. I love hearing more and more about this movie. And such positive things as well. Please continue to feed us as much as you can, because I am all eyes and ears! Is there a Russian trailer somewhere we can enjoy?

  6. I did a search in the Yahoo Russian site and found the following link which you can watch the trailer and see 16 production photos.
    Looks like the rating of this movie is very good in Russia.


  7. Congratulations! GO "City Island"!!

    Please come to Greece, will you? (Not gonna happen but no harm in trying:)


  8. Great new photos though I'm hoping for even more soon. It was a little disconcerting to watch that trailer (which is the same as on the Polish site) with the voices being dubbed. I think it was men doing the women's voices as well? Funny. :)