EXCLUSIVE: “It’s the first time I’ve seen the film in a movie theater; I’m having chills, ”filmmaker Eddie Huang said tonight as he watched his directorial feature. Boogie at AMC Century City 15.
“My mom is in that first scene, and I just had to see what it looks like,” he gushed.
The Focus Features director and writer came to AMC’s Century City 15 opening in Century City, Calif. To present Boogie to a sold-out show (at 25% capacity) at 7 p.m. With LA County and State recently easing Covid restrictions and allowing theaters to reopen after a year of closure, Century City is one of two AMC multiplexes reopening tonight in addition to its site of Burbank. Channel 1 will open more theaters this coming weekend, including the Universal Citywalk AMC.
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“It means a lot to me that you came to watch this movie today,” Huang said to the hoots and howls of moviegoers in Auditorium 11.
“I did an intro at a drive-in, but it’s not the same,” Huang told Deadline tonight, “My heart is racing watching this in a theater, it’s really cool.”
“I did an intro for 200 cars at a drive-in, but it’s not the same. It was funny because I was so thankful that Focus let me have a premiere (in LA), but I sat in my car and 45 seconds in it, I just turned it off, because the sound from a drive-in is not synchronized to the movie. I couldn’t watch it. So I turned it off and ate some popcorn and Sour Patch kids, ”Huang added.
Huang Shooting Boogie in 26 days in September 2019 in Flushing, NY and downtown New York. Focus became involved in the project in November 2017.
How did the filmmaker feel about the fact that his film was released at such an uneven time for an exhibition during Covid? With New York recently reopened and Los Angeles next weekend, we’re still a little north of 50% of all US and Canadian theaters in operation.
“I chose the date, because I had an idea for this month,” Huang told us.
“They (Focus) gave us options for dates, and I said I wanted March 5th. There was a point where they wanted to back it up because there was a good response to the trailer, but I said, ‘No’, I really think this movie is coming at the perfect time. We’re coming out of the pandemic and I wanted to be one of the first movies to come back.
“I don’t think about things from a money point of view, but I believe our movie is going to bring people back to the movies,” Huang continued, “It’s not a huge blockbuster, but it’s a movie. unique in it’s genre.”
Boogie tells the coming-of-age story of Alfred “Boogie” Chin (Taylor Takahashi), a basketball freak living in Queens, New York, who dreams of someday playing in the NBA. As his parents pressure him to focus on earning an elite college scholarship, Boogie must find a way to deal with a new girlfriend, high school, field rivals, and the burden of expectations. Taylour Paige and Pop Smoke are also on the bill. For two weekends, Boogie grossed $ 2.3 million.
Then Huang is working on the HBO animated series Chino, that we first told you about, and he’s sending you a new storyline, set in LA, titled Melted tuna at the studios.
And how was the foot traffic tonight at AMC Century City 15?
Remember, it’s a Monday night in Los Angeles. So, there aren’t a crowd of people dressed in Marvel costumes or queues. But with the schedules of 7 p.m. and 8 p.m. (there is no 9 p.m. with temporarily reduced hours) of Chaos March, Boogie and Raya and the last dragon exhausted, it’s clear that people want to come back to the movies. The lobby had a huge floor-to-ceiling digital screen promoting Disney Cruella and 6 times Oscar nominee Nomadland, as well as a huge standing traveler from Paramount A quiet place II with posters of Universal’s next action shot No one and Focus Features Oscar nominee Promising young woman.
And how awesome it is to see trailers on a booming giant screen, that is to say Cruella, Universal No one and A24 The green knight (which looks amazing on the big screen, in that quirky signature A24 like Middle)? It’s a reminder that what cinemas have to offer is exclusive, and when it’s exclusive there is no reason to stay at home.
Century City 15 staff had a short delay to reopen the theater, but from looks between the ticket office and the concessions, they worked like a well-oiled machine, showing no signs of being absent. since a year. The AMC Century 15 was very clean, the moviegoers well distant and masked; all in all a comfortable place to enjoy a movie.
And talk about perfect timing: who would have guessed that the day LA cinemas return would be Oscar nomination day?