54: The Director's Cut
September 22, 2018
Katharina Otto-Bernstein Screening Room
Lenfest Center for the Arts
615 W 129th St
New York, NY 10027
1998/2015 / 106 min
Director & Screenwriter: Mark Christopher
Cast: Ryan Philippe, Salma Hayek, Mike Myers, Breckin Meyer, Neve Campbell, Sela Ward, Sherry Stringfield, Heather Matarazzo
Film introduced by the director, Mark Christopher.
After graduating from the Columbia University graduate film program, Mark Christopher ’96 wrote a serio-comic screenplay about an ambitious young bisexual man who comes of age while working as a bartender at the legendary New York disco Studio 54. Ira Deutchman, Dolly Hall, and Richard Gladstein produced the film, starring Ryan Philippe, Salma Hayek, and Mike Myers, with financing from Miramax. However, after a test screening, Miramax’s Harvey Weinstein ordered Christopher to reshoot nearly half the movie, removing not only most of the gay content but also much of the story. Panned by critics and ignored by audiences, the film was largely forgotten until 2015, when Weinstein’s successors at Miramax finally allowed Christopher to reconstruct his original director’s cut. That cut premiered at the Berlin Film Festival, where IndieWire’s Ryan Lattanzio hailed it as “a new gay cult classic, a glorious, hedonistic revelry that transports us to an underground utopia of sexually liberated freak flyers, only to plunge us into its inevitable ruination.” That’s the version we’ll be showing.
This screening is part of NY Indie Guy: Ira Deutchman and the Rise of Independent Film
On September 14-16 and September 20-23, 2018, Columbia University’s Lenfest Center for the Arts will host a retrospective exhibit honoring the career of Film Professor and Producing Concentration Supervisor Ira Deutchman. Since 1975, Deutchman has been a leader in distributing, marketing, and producing American independent films, international films, and arthouse films. He is perhaps best known for founding and running the distribution companies Cinecom, Fine Line Features, and Emerging Pictures. Deutchman has taught at Columbia since 1987.
This retrospective will screen essential motion pictures from various points in Deutchman’s career, such as The Brother From Another Planet; Diva; Harlan County USA; sex, lies, & videotape; Swoon; and A Woman Under the Influence. Many showings will feature Q&A talkbacks with filmmakers or performers. The celebration will also include panel discussions and an extensive exhibit covering Deutchman’s impact on cinema.
All screenings and panels will take place in the Katharina Otto-Bernstein Screening Room at the Lenfest Center for the Arts, 615 W. 129th St., New York. All films will be accompanied by either an introduction or a Q&A session.
Tickets: $12 General Admission / $10 Seniors (65 and older) / $8 Students
Advance ticket sales available online only
Day-of-screening ticket sales available on-site, pending availability
All panels are ticketed, but free of charge
There will be a student rush line for all screenings*
The Art House Convergence
Cowan, DeBaets, Abrahams & Sheppard
Film and Media Studies, Columbia University School of the Arts
The Society of Fellows and Heyman Center for the Humanities at Columbia University
The Institute for Research on Women, Gender, and Sexuality at Columbia University
The University of Michigan Library