Arts and Culture Features
Minghella Movie Marathon
Stars from the film world were on the Isle of Wight for a weekend of cinema events to mark the first anniversary of the death of award-winning film-maker and screenwriter Anthony Minghella.
To mark the first anniversary of the death of Oscar-winning film director Anthony Minghella, his family and students from the Island's Young Chamber, together with the British Film Institute, organised a unique movie marathon.
The event was held at The Medina Theatre in Newport over the weekend of March 13 to 15, with screenings of Anthony’s best loved films.
The Minghella Movie Marathon began on the Friday with a screening of Truly, Madly, Deeply hosted by the late director's sister, Gioia Minghella, and introduced by stars Alan Rickman and Michael Maloney.
Saturday saw Jude Law and jazz trumpeter and composer Guy Barker introduce a screening of The Talented Mr Ripley followed by an 'audience with' event hosted by the movie star.
Jude Law, who worked with Anthony on Cold Mountain, The Talented Mr Ripley, and Breaking and Entering, told BBC South:
"I miss him. He was someone who pushed me harder and further as an actor and as a person. He gave a great warmth to creating - which is something I cherish."
He also spoke about his memories of working with Anthony:
"He was unbelievably well prepared and fastidious with detail and research, but once you were there it was all about having fun. There was always a lot of jokes and singing on set!"
Other stars attending the weekend's events include Martin Freeman and Kevin Whately.
All seven of Anthony's films were shown over the course of the weekend, including the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency - Anthony's last completed work which was screened on BBC One in March 2008.
Film producer Lord David Puttnam said Anthony was "a very special man" and the festival was a chance to remember him:
"I've huge affection for him, his family and his work. Of course the nice thing about being a filmmaker is that you've something to leave behind."
Island students share the limelight with Jude Law
Speaking at a press conference, Anthony's sister Gioia said the event was an "emotional marathon" for the family:
"We've created something beautiful and memorable and it's a chance to rediscover Anthony's character through his creative output."
Gioia also hinted that the festival could become an annual event: "We have been overwhelmed by the response. We are sure that this is something we will be building on."
At the press conference Guy Barker also described how Anthony was the "greatest music producer" he had ever worked with.
Meanwhile Nikki Amuka-Bird who played Alice Busang in No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency described what Anthony was like to work for:
Anthony Minghella with a pair of Baftas
"You felt he entered the experience with you. You just wanted to give him your best work. It was wonderful."
Students from the Island's Young Chamber were involved in organising the event. Ellie Boyce said it had been a chance for young people to learn about one of the Island's greatest sons:
"It's been so amazing. We got a sense of what he [Anthony Minghella] was really like."
Born on the Isle of Wight to Italian parents in 1954, Anthony Minghella went on to become one of Britain's most celebrated film-makers and screenwriters.
He was best known for The English Patient - which earned him an Oscar for best director in 1997 - as well as Truly, Madly, Deeply and Cold Mountain.
Almost a year on from his death, at this year's Bafta awards ceremony Kate Winslet paid tribute to Anthony who had worked on the film, The Reader.
"You are much missed today, and you will be much missed for many years to come, and this is for you. Thank you. Thank you," she said.
last updated: 25/03/2009 at 11:35
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