August: Osage County, LA, Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts

The Weinsteins’ much talked about August: Osage County, had its L.A. premiere last night at the Regal Cinemas at L. A. Live in downtown Los Angeles.  August, is garnering award season accolades as expected.  Based on the play of the same name by the respected playwright and actor Tracy Letts and directed by John Wells, this film about a tortured family, the Westons, and its hidden secrets is now becoming a favorite among the critics. The film is set for wide release on Dec. 25.

We got to go and as we got there, none other than Julia Roberts was approaching the red carpet surrounded by photographers, fans and security people. Roberts looked simply smashing in a tuxedo short dress, not surprising since she’s styled by the noted celebrity fashion stylist Elizabeth Stewart, who always hits home runs with Roberts, Cate Blanchett, Sandra Bullock, Jessica Chastain, Amanda Seyfried and other clients.  Stewart and her husband, writer/producer Rob Bragin (Pee Wee’s Playhouse, Army Wives) make quite the power couple.  Bragin’s latest pilot, Proof, was just greenlit at TNT.  It’s a supernatural medical drama that Kyra Sedgwick is producing with him.  Roberts looked supernaturally stunning as she was joined on the carpet by her co-stars Julianne Nicholson, Juliette Lewis, Chris Cooper, Abigail Breslin, Misty Upham, Ewan McGregor, Will Coffey, Margo Martindale, Dermot Mulroney, Wells of couse, and, oh, did we mention Meryl Streep?

Streep, always the gracious lady she is, came and spoke with all on the carpet. Her tour de force performance as the matriarch, Violet Weston of this troubled clan, is of course phenomenal.  Roberts is equal to the task, playing her daughter Barbara Weston; she does the best work she has ever performed on screen.  The rest of the cast are gems and it’s going to be hard pressed for any other film, even American Hustle, to beat this ensemble.

None other than Harvey Weinstein himself introduced the film, giving kudos to CAA agent Kevin Huvane for helping to put the deal together.  Harvey was in good spirits as he and his brother Bob, just officially got reunited with his old company, Miramax, named after their parents.  They sold the company 20 years ago to Disney, regretted doing so, and have tried to amend that since. Harvey introduced the cast, they all took a bow and the film was shown to rousing applause.

The after party was across the street at the tony Ritz Carlton Penthouse. Harvey was eager to talk to another power couple, Essential Media’s Sonja Armstrong and Chris Hilton. Essential Media produced an Oscar-contending rival to August, the terrific Saving Mr. Banks, along with Disney, and Harvey magnanimously praised the film while talking with Armstrong and Hilton.  Other notables making the scene were, famed actress K. Callen, who is in an upcoming L.A. play called Rx with her singer daughter Kristi Callan who sings in the harmony a cappella vocal trio, The Roswell Sisters; actor Rob Morrow; Producer Chassidy Rana; actress Denise Grayson and her partner, the respected actor Robert Forster; Actor John Heard; Producers Karen Kramer and her producer/performer daughter Kat. Lovely Karen is the widow of the late great director Stanley Kramer. All agree that August will surely garner plenty of accolades during the awards season. And Julia and Meryl, seeing them on screen together is a moviegoer’s dream.

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Photo from The Weinstein Company 

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