Saturday, October 25, 2008

Bob Fosse loads the dishwasher

Have you ever wondered how Bob Fosse would load the dishwasher, what kind of technique he'd use? I can't say it's a question that's ever crossed my mind. But I've been on a Fosse kick since I watched The Pajama Game a few days ago and became absolutely enthralled with his choreography.

In The Oregonian, Shawn Levy interviews Jonathan Demme, director of the new movie Rachel Getting Married, starring Anne Hathaway, Rosemarie DeWitt and Bill Irwin. I haven't seen the movie but I do love Anne Hathaway. Her character is a recovering drug addict who gets a pass from a treatment center to attend the wedding of her sister, played by DeWitt.

So, what does this have to do with Bob Fosse? I'm getting there. Apparently the father of the bride, played by Tony-winner Irwin, and the groom, Tunde Adebimpe of the band TV on the Radio, have an impromptu competition to load the dishwasher. Demme says that the scene comes directly from the personal experience of screenwriter Jenny Lumet.

"It's rooted in Jenny's reality. She's the daughter of Sidney Lumet, and one night Bob Fosse was over for dinner, and they drifted into the kitchen, and Fosse was watching Sidney load the dishwasher and critiqued him a little bit, and they had this showdown. And as Jenny tells it, she's got Sidney, who looks like a pomegranate, with his Joe-Six-Pack approach to the thing, and Fosse, who's dressed all in black and never stops smoking his Nat Sherman, with his kind of balletic style of loading the dishwasher."

4 comments:

Dale said...

I saw your headline and my brain made me laugh, wonder, read and enjoy. That's a funny story.

Amy said...

Now I really want to see Rachel Getting Married.

You've seen All That Jazz? I love that movie. Especially the scene where he debuts his new dance work to his straight-laced investor team.

Esther said...

Glad you liked it, Dale! The free time that other people devote to having a social life I use to scour the Internet looking for amusing anecdotes to share with my readers. But the smile on your face makes the sacrifice worthwhile!

Esther said...

Hey Amy,
Thanks for the comment. Yeah, that story piqued my curiosity about the movie. I saw All that Jazz years ago but after The Pajama Game, it might be time for a little Bob Fosse retrospective!