Home Empire State of Mind NYC Wrap Up: Jane Fonda’s Boswell, French Cinema Pix

Jane Fonda‘s biographer, Patricia Bosworth, was saluted last night by Broadway producer Judy Gordon on the Upper East Side. Patti’s book, “Jane Fonda: The Public Life of a Private Woman,” is a New York Times bestseller, the latest of Bosworth’s many terrific tomes (do read her much acclaimed bios of Montgomery Clift, Diane Arbus, and of her own father, the lawyer for the Hollywood Ten). Gordon’s A list guests included famed actor Michael Murphy, Kathryn Altman (widow of famed director Robert Altman), author Stephen Schlesinger and his legendary mom Alexandra, former French Vogue editor Joan Juliet Buck, Olympic champ and sports analyst Dick Button, writer David Black, famed director (and yes, the father) Robert Downey Sr., legendary Broadway and “Saturday Night Live” choreographer Pat Birch, producer Dennis Grimaldi, and writer-producer Maria Cooper Janis (who also happens to be the lovely daughter of Gary Cooper). After the party, a few of the guests repaired to Elio’s on the Upper East Side where we reminisced about the much missed Elaine Kaufman. Elio, owner of the restaurant, once worked for Elaine. His restaurant, long established down the street, is one of its successors…(Note to Elaine, who considered Elio a traitor: we have to eat somewhere!)…

…Meanwhile: until October 4th, you can see the startlingly wonderful photographs taken by France’s most treasured film export (and expert) Catherine Verret at the Furman Gallery in Lincoln Center’s Walter Reade Theater. Catherine is well known to the New York film crowd as the doyenne of French cinema in this city. Her photography turns out to have been a hidden second career. The exhibit, “New York Mon Amour: A View of French Cinema,” includes Jeanne Moreau. Charlotte Gainsbourg. Isabelle Huppert, Catherine Deneuve, Gerard Depardieu, Jean Reno and many others. It’s very interesting since Catherine has been responsible for almost 40 years for exposing America to French film through UniFrance and the French Film Office. She was celebrated last week with a magnificent reception at the French embassy on Fifth Avenue in the landmark former Payne Whitney mansion designed by Stanford White. (Yes, those Whitneys.)  PS In real life, so to speak, Catherine is long married to Pierre Vimont, the former French ambassador to the United States…

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