A Florida Film Festival/Isabella Rossellini/”Blue Velvet” memory

Thanks to the Florida Film Festival for posting these fun photos (David Martinez photographer) from our Q&A with the regal Isabella Rossellini from last week. She was a delight to talk to, the audience had some fun questions and we’re all looking forward to her playing Julia Child’s mentor and over-shadowed friend Simone Beck for a streaming series, her next big project.

You like for such evenings to end on a laugh, so as we were talking to a star from “Blue Velvet” about her most famous role, a “cult film,” I asked her this — “What was the weirdest random encounter you ever had with a fan of that film?”

Cult films make for cultish fans. See a Dario Argento nut, an Eli Roth cultist? Cross the street. “Blue Velvet” fans could be the same way.

“Well, there was ONE,” Rossellini said, after some thought. “It was a couple of years after the film came out, and I was walking in New York when this VERY TALL man came up to me, almost in my face, WILD EYED, and starts yelling, “Don’t you LOOK at me! “DON’T you look at me!”

“I was alarmed, quite frightened. I didn’t remember it was a line from Frank (Dennis Hopper) in the film. And he was SCREAMING it at me.”

She pauses.

“Of course, I didn’t know who Penn Jillette was.” (Another pause, for effect). “But apparently, he was a very big fan!”

The audience ROARS. I almost fell off the stage. Well-played, Ms. Rossellini.

About Roger Moore

Movie Critic, formerly with McClatchy-Tribune News Service, Orlando Sentinel, published in Spin Magazine, The World and now published here, Orlando Magazine, Autoweek Magazine
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