The 2017 TCM Film Festival: Revisiting Adventures in Paradise — Part VI

The anticipation builds . . .

It’s about that time – time for another installment in my monthly look at the 2017 Turner Classic Movies Film Festival! And this month I’m taking a look at one of my favorite experiences of the festival – the Hand and Footprint Ceremony featuring Carl Reiner and his son, Rob.

(Before I dive into my reporting of the actual event, let me just say that in order to be allowed to cover it as a member of the media, I had to submit a special request – which was turned down. BUT, an angel appeared in the form of my fellow blogger and pal, Aurora of Once Upon a Screen, who allowed me to attend in her stead. I’ll be forever grateful. Forever.)

The ceremony involves the placing of the honorees’ hands and feet in cement, to be installed in the forecourt at what I will always know as Grauman’s Chinese Theater. This year’s event was impressively peppered with a number of celebrities who were on hand as special guests – Kevin Nealon, Cary Elwes (who’s still as gorgeous as he was as Wesley in The Princess Bride), Norman Lear, and Barbara Bain (who literally walked right in front of me. I mean, I could have pulled her ponytail as she passed by – that’s how close she was. Not that I would have done that. Of course.) And that’s not all! But I’m getting ahead of myself.

Billy Crystal was a delight, as usual.

TCM’s Ben Mankiewicz opened the ceremony, telling the gathered audience of media and lucky passholders that “few fathers and sons are as accomplished as Carl and Rob Reiner, and none are as funny. Carl’s version of slowing down is writing just one book a year.”

Also at the event were Carl Reiner’s longtime friend Tom Bergeron, who called his pal “humor’s greatest blessing,” and Rob Reiner’s BFF Billy Crystal. Crystal recalled that when he was a new comedian in 1975, he had a gig at L.A.’s Comedy Store and Carl Reiner and Norman Lear were in the audience. After Crystal’s set, Carl introduced himself and two weeks later, Norman Lear offered him a part in an All in the Family episode, playing the best friend of Rob Reiner’s character.

“In the rehearsal, I was watching Rob and the seeds of what would become a great director,” said Crystal, who would later be directed by Rob Reiner in The Princess Bride and When Harry Met Sally. “He always has the perfect answer as a director: ‘Let’s try it.’”

The Reiners’ mutual regard was heartwarming and smile-inducing.

Crystal had the honor of introducing Carl and Rob Reiner, whose obvious love and high regard for each other was beyond heartwarming – it makes me smile, even now, to remember their mutual displays of affection. “I’ve known this guy almost all of his life,” Carl Reiner jokingly said of his son, adding that he has three favorite films that he likes to share with others:  The Count of Monte Cristo, Random Harvest, and The Princess Bride. “And this has nothing to do with the fact that Rob is my son,” Carl said. “Any time you feel low, put on The Princess Bride and you’ll go away smiling.”

Hope to be back for the 2018 ceremony!

“I think we should not only put our hands and feet in the cement,” Rob Reiner jested. “We should also put our bald heads.” On a more serious note, Rob went on to share why the ceremony meant so much to him: “We are the first father and son to do this together at the same time, and also, my father was my idol. He stood for everything I wanted to be in life.”

I hope to be able to cover many hand and footprint ceremonies at TCM film fests in the coming years, but this one will always hold a very special place in my heart. It was truly a highlight of the festival for me.

Stay tuned for the next installment of Revisiting Adventures in Paradise! And in the meantime, enjoy a few more of my pictures from this memorable event!

Barbara Bain. (She walked right in front of me!)

Tom Bergeron is a close friend of Carl Reiner’s. (And I’ve been a Bergeron fan since Fox After Breakfast!)

Norman Lear is the coolest.

Rob Reiner planting his feet in the cement.

And Kevin Nealon was on hand!

Cary Elwes. Still a heartstopper.

 

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~ by shadowsandsatin on January 24, 2018.

4 Responses to “The 2017 TCM Film Festival: Revisiting Adventures in Paradise — Part VI”

  1. Thanks for sharing your experiences at this ceremony, Karen. It allows us to live vicariously through you! 🙂

    Great photos, by the way. I especially love the one of the Roosevelt from that angle.

    • Thank you so much, Ruth. It’s so funny that you mentioned that — your photos from the 2016 event were my inspiration. Your photos were so awesome, and I was determined to try to do something similar! 🙂

  2. That was such a memorable event. It was great to share it with you!

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