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The Arts Intel Report

A Cultural Compass
For the World Traveler
A Cultural Compass
For the World Traveler

Filmmaker Event: Ramin Bahrani

April 10, 2021
4 W 58th St, New York, NY 10019, United States

It was one of the saddest sights to see, back in August 2019, when the Paris Theater at 4 West 58th Street closed for good. Marlene Dietrich had cut its inaugural ribbon in 1948, and since then the single-screen theater—New York City’s last as of 2016—had become a destination for motion pictures by Federico Fellini and Franco Zeffirelli. After the closure, Netflix leased the Paris. Now, post-pandemic, it has programmed its first Filmmaker Event with three screenings devoted to the Iranian-American director Ramin Bahrani. At 12:00, there’s Martin Scorsese’s Goodfellas, selected by Bahrani as a key influence on his work for its refusal, he says, “to pass judgments or form moral conclusions about its deeply flawed characters.” At 3:30, there’s Bahrani’s The White Tiger, based on Aravand Adiga’s Man Booker Prize-winning novel about a poor Indian driver, and starring Adarsh Gourav and Priyanka Chopra. The film earned Bahrani an Academy Award nomination for this year’s Best Adapted Screenplay. Finally, at 7:15, there is Bahrani’s 2007 film Chop Shop, set in a ramshackle neighborhood of Willets Point, Queens. A conversation with the filmmaker bridges the second and last screenings. —J.V.

A still from Ramin Bahrani’s “The White Tiger.” Photo courtesy of Netflix.

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