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Café Society – In Cinemas Friday – From Scarlett Johansson to Parker Posey: Woody’s Allen’s Regular Collaborators

31 August 2016

Set in the 1930s, Woody Allen’s bittersweet romance CAFÉ SOCIETY follows Bronx-born Bobby Dorfman (Jesse Eisenberg) to Hollywood, where he falls in love, and back to New York, where he is swept up in the vibrant world of high society nightclub life.

Centring on events in the lives of Bobby’s colourful Bronx family, the film is a glittering valentine to the movie stars, socialites, playboys, debutantes, politicians, and gangsters who epitomised the excitement and glamour of the age.

Poignant, and often hilarious, CAFÉ SOCIETY, a film with a novel’s sweep, takes us on a journey from pastel-clad dealmakers in plush Hollywood mansions, to the quarrels and tribulations of a humble Bronx family, to the rough-and-tumble violence of New York gangsters, to the sparkling surfaces and secret scandals of Manhattan high life.

With CAFÉ SOCIETY, Woody Allen conjures up a 1930s world that has passed to tell a deeply romantic tale of dreams that never die.

With Café Society out this Friday, 2nd September, we decided to take a look at some of the best actresses that Woody Allen has worked with and has been inspired by through all of his years of film-making...




Scarlett Johansson

Scarlett Johansson is one of Woody Allen’s most recent favourite actresses to work with. She has starred in three Allen films which were Matchpoint, Scoop and Vicky Cristina Barcelona. Woody has taken a liking to Scarlett Johansson as he found that she “She livens the set up. The minute she walks on the set, the amperage goes up 200 points,”. Matchpoint was Johansson’s first film with Woody, she stars as Nola Rice, a struggling American actress who ends up being in a bit of a an affair when a former tennis pro falls for her even though she is dating his friend and soon-to-be brother-in-law. Woody Allen enjoyed working with Scarlett Johansson and admired the talent that she brought “She can sing. She can do dramatic things and jokes if you need her to. Whenever there's a part she could play, she would probably always be my first choice.”




Dianne Wiest

Dianne Wiest is a Oscar and Emmy winner and is well known for her roles in multiple Woody Allen films. Dianne has won two Academy Awards for her roles in Hannah and Her Sisters and Bullets Over Broadway. She is most notably known for her performance in Hannah and Her Sisters playing the role of Holly, who is going through the motion of wanting to be several different things. Between two Thanksgivings two years apart, Hannah's husband falls in love with her sister Lee, while her hypochondriac ex-husband rekindles his relationship with her sister Holly.




Cate Blanchett

Cate Blanchett won a Academy Award for her role in her first Woody Allen film, Blue Jasmine. Cate plays a New York socialite who runs off to live with her sister Ginger after her husband gets exposed as a crook. This film was critically well received and was also nominated for the Academy Awards for Best Actress in a Supporting Role and Best Original Screenplay.




Winona Ryder

Winona Ryder recently took the internet by storm with her return to the silver screen in Netflix’s Stranger Things but before the most recent horror series Winona actually worked alongside Woody Allen back in the late 90s and appeared as part of an all-star cast in Celebrity, after Drew Barrymore turned the role down. Due to her performance in Celebrity, Woody Allen was really keen to work with Winona again for his 2004 film, Melinda and Melinda, along with Robert Downey Jr and felt that she was perfect for the role.




Meryl Streep

Meryl Streep played Woody Allen’s ex wife in the film Manhattan but one of the amazing parts about Meryl Streep’s role is how she filmed her scenes in between her breaks when filming Kramer V Kramer. Manhattan was Meryl Streep third film since her debut into Hollywood and this was her largest film yet. In a interview back in October 2013, Woody Allen said “Great is having that natural gift that you can’t define. It’s an automatic thing. It has nothing to do with anything you can understand or write down; it’s just luck. Meryl Streep has it. And I’ve worked with some actresses that have had it”




Emma Stone

Emma Stone starred in two Woody Allen films, Magic by Moonlight and Irrational Man. When casting for Irrational Man, Woody Allen didn’t have anyone in mind until he reached around page 15 to 20 to which he said 'Oh God, who's going to play this but Emma Stone? Who's lovely and beautiful, projects intelligence, gets away with a college age... even though she's a little older than college-age?'" Woody felt that the character was perfect for Emma Stone and fortunately she was free and very eager to do this film with him.




Diane Keaton

Diane Keaton has been in 8 films by Woody Allen and won an Academy Award for her role in Annie Hall. Diane Keaton was also dating Woody Allen up until 1972 where they unfortunately decided to end their long running relationship but even so Diane Keaton continued to do films with Woody Allen. In fact Woody has stated that Diane was the one who helped him to truly understand and write female characters in his films.



Parker Posey

Café Society star Parker Posey also starred in Woody Allen’s film Irrational Man as a professor who is stuck in a unhappy marriage and ends up seducing the college’s new philosophy professor. When Parker Posey found out that she got the role she burst out into tears, she was so determined to be in the film, even after she broke her wrist when she fell off a ladder in her kitchen doing home repairs, nothing could stop her. When she saw the doctor she told him that she had a big break being cast by Allen, and he rushed her into surgery. Parker Posey was not going to let anything stop her from being in Woody Allen’s 50th film.

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