Adrian Wootton

Adrian Wootton Talks Film Femmes

Presented by MIFF 37ºSouth Market & Accelerator Lab, Adrian Wootton returns exclusively to Melbourne for another series of his acclaimed Illustrated Film Talks this year focusing on the Hollywood Golden Age and four legendary actresses, who appeared in some of the greatest films in celluloid history.

A former Director of the London Film Festival, British Film Institute and the UK’s National Film Theatre, Wootton is CEO of Film London & The British Film Commission, Director of the Crime Scene Festival, and a program advisor to the Venice Film Festival, London Film Festival and Italy’s Courmayeur Noir Fest. Wootton has also contributed to the Guardian, Sight & Sound, BBC Radio, and received an Honorary Doctorate by The University of East Anglia.


Each lecture is $15


Interview with Adrian Wootton


Lauren Bacall: Hollywood Icon of Cool

Monday 07 August: 5.15pm to 7.15pm; Village Roadshow Theatrette at the State Library

A protégé of legendary director Howard Hawks, dazzling onscreen co-star, and happy off-screen wife, of Humphrey Bogart in a succession of classic noir thrillers (To Have and To Have Not, The Big Sleep, Key Largo), and unhappy lover of Frank Sinatra, former model Lauren Bacall (1924-2014) was one of the great icons of Hollywood’s golden age who also showed talent for comedy (How to Marry a Millionaire). Wootton chronicles the amazing long life and career of this feisty diva, who was also a Tony award-winning stage performer, a radio star and in later life carved out a career of memorable supporting roles, earning a Golden Globe Award and Oscar nomination for Barbra Streisand’s The Mirror Has Two Faces (1996).


Judy Garland: Over the Rainbow

Tuesday 08 August: 5.15pm to 7.15pm; Village Roadshow Theatrette at the State Library

Forever remembered as Dorothy in 1939’s The Wizard of Oz, vaudevillian child star Judy Garland (1922-1969) was a singing sensation and one of MGM’s big stars on the back of several “backyard musicals” with Mickey Rooney (Babes in Arms) and other movies like Meet Me in St. Louis (1944). As Garland’s film career slowed, her Grammy-winning recording and concert career took off in the 1950s, as well as a screen comeback in the Golden Globe-winning A Star is Born (1954), and TV specials and an Emmy-nominated TV series in the early 1960s. Whilst celebrating the brilliance of her talent, Wootton explores the rollercoaster career and complex life of this five-times married gay icon and Hollywood legend who mothered a musical dynasty (Liza Minnelli and Lorna Luft), and was mother-in-law to Australian showman Peter Allen, but famously battled addictions, financial stress, body image issues and deep emotional insecurity.


Gloria Grahame: Not Dying in Liverpool

Wednesday 09 August: 5.15pm to 7.15pm; Village Roadshow Theatrette at the State Library

For a time embodying the notion of a femme fatale, the alluring Gloria Grahame (1923-1981) will be forever remembered for her performances in films like Crossfire (1947), In a Lonely Place (1950), the Oscar-winning Bad and the Beautiful (1952) and Fritz Lang’s The Big Heat (1953).

Coinciding with a new biopic, starring Annette Bening and adapted from the book Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool, about Grahame’s last months spent in the UK’s Liverpool, Wootton hails her onscreen brilliance but reveals the controversial personal life of the four-times married sassy screen siren was as tumultuous and complex as the plots of the movies she appeared in.


Ingrid Bergman: Golden Era Global Star

Thursday 10 August: 5.15pm to 7.15pm; Village Roadshow Theatrette at the State Library

The Oscar, Golden Globe, Emmy and Tony award-winning Ingrid Bergman (1915-1982) worked with some of the world’s greatest filmmakers, appeared in some of the finest movies ever made and acted in her native Swedish, as well as German, Italian, French and English. With her Hollywood career kicking-off with the 1939 English language remake of her 1936 Swedish film Intermezzo, she is best remembered for Casablanca (1942), For Whom the Bell Tolls (1943), and Alfred Hitchcock’s Spellbound (1945) and Notorious (1946).

While saluting her cinematic brilliance, Wootton also explores the thrice-married Bergman’s eventful personal life, including a scandalous relationship with Roberto Rossellini that resulted in a European exile during the early 1950s and the birth of actress Isabella Rossellini, before a triumphant return to Hollywood in 1956’s Anastasia (1956). She earned her seventh Oscar nomination for her final film role in 1978’s Autumn Sonata.