Kiefer Sutherland made a surprise appearance Saturday at a tribute to director Joel Schumacher, who received a lifetime achievement award from the Hamptons International Film Festival.
Sutherland, who was 18 when he played a sexy vampire in Schumacher's 1987 teen classic "The Lost Boys," called the movie "one of my favorite films." He also shared credit with Schumacher for his character's memorable shoulder-length but chopped-top haircut. "We both conspired to invent the mullet," Sutherland said.
Schumacher spoke at the Bay Street Theatre in Sag Harbor, an exceptionally busy venue during this 22nd installment of the festival. The theater hosted Laura Dern later in the day and will do the same for Hilary Swank and Mark Ruffalo Sunday.
Schumacher, 75, spoke to Jess Cagle, editor of Entertainment Weekly magazine, about his long history of casting unknowns who would later become megastars. He tapped Demi Moore for "St. Elmo's Fire" in 1985, Julia Roberts for "Flatliners" in 1990 and Colin Farrell for "Tigerland" in 2000, among others.
"If Julia Roberts walked into your office at 19 and you didn't hire her, you shouldn't be in the movie business," Schumacher said. "The only thing that happens when people become stars is that you see something in them, and the audiences agrees."
Dern, who appears in "Wild," which screened Saturday night at the festival, talked about her own early career with film critic Joe Neumaier of the New York Daily News, noting that she turned down many opportunities as a teenage actress. "I won't say what film, but it became a very iconic film" for its generation, she said. "And my agent fired me when I chose 'Blue Velvet.' "
The festival also continued its "Views From Long Island" section, which included "Diplomacy," a World War II drama from the great German director Volker Schlöndorff (1979's "The Tin Drum"). A part-time local resident for the past five years, Schlöndorff said his Amagansett cabin is where he wrote the script for his previous film, his current film, and his upcoming project, titled "Montauk Revisited." In "Montauk Revisited" Ralph Fiennes plays a man trying to recapture a bygone romance. In the Hamptons, the director, 75, said, "I don't know anybody, nobody knows me. I can just do my work." He added, "Now I blew my cover."
"Gabriel," a film starring Rory Culkin as an unstable young man who tracks down a girl on Shelter Island (where the film was shot), also screens Sunday as part of the Long Island section.