Monday, May 22, 2006

E. Steven Fried 2006 SIFF Bio

photo by Oberdana

E. Steven Fried didn't have have time to write a bio, but we managed to catch a few minutes with him for this interview:

Q: You moved here several years ago from New York where you had some minor involvement in the local film scene. Have things been different for you here in Seattle?

A: Yes, I've noticed that turkey is really popular here.

Much more so than in New York. Whenever I go to the deli to get lunch I notice half the customers are ordering turkey sandwiches. It's not so much the choice of turkey that mystifies me as the fact that the quality of sliced turkey meat here is so poor that I don't understand its popularity. It's this overly processed stuff that tastes nothing like fresh carved turkey. Why anyone would want to eat it is beyond me.
Q: Do you have any observations beyond things relating to turkey?
A: Yes. Deli meats here are, in general, not as good as in New York. Try finding a good slice of roast beef or corned beef. And pastrami? Forget about it. On the other hand you can find good salami without too much difficulty.
Q: I meant, specifically, your film related observations.
A: Oh, well, you may not find as many film-related things here, but I've found that the film scene is very accessible. At least, I've had a lot more opportunity to do things here than I ever did in New York. At least, that's the way it has worked out for me.
Q: So you see a lot films.
A: Yes, I see a couple of films a week.
Q: And how about SIFF. How many times have you attended?
A: I've been going every year since I moved here. So, this year will be my fourth SIFF.
Q: How many films do you usually see?
A: The first year I only went to the Secret Fest screenings, the next year I saw sixteen films and last year I attended about thirty. This year I hope to do at least forty.
Q: Do you have any funny SIFF stories?
A: Yeah, last year I was going to see 9 Songs, but right before the screening I spilled a drink on my white jeans and went home to change. If there was one film I was not going to attend with a big wet stain on my crotch it was that.
Q: Do you have a SIFF strategy?
A: Yes, I try to bunch the films by location, to do as little traveling as possible. I live within walking distance of most of the theatres, but it helps if I can consolidate the locations.
Q: How early do you typically get to each film?
A: I usually arrive an hour or so before each screening and am often the first person on the passholder's line.
Q: Since you tend to be at the front of the line are you willing to save a space for someone?
A: If I know them or they're important. Actually, forget the second part. Only if I know them. I don't care how important they are. If I don't know them, they get nothing!
Q: That's nice to know. How can people spot you in order to um.... act accordingly.
A: I'll be the guy with the Chris Meloni"sh smile.
Q: Well, thanks. Hope you enjoy SIFF this year.
A: You too, pal.


  1. There is ONE place downtown that serves fresh roast turkey every day, year round. I wanna say it's on the ground floor of a parking garage up around fifth between downtown and Belltown. If you pass the Cinerama, you've gone too far. It's run by Koreans. I cannot recall the name of the jernt.

  2. Useful advice. Gotta love it. The pastrami sandwiches at Il Fornaio are pretty good, by the way. And very convenient when attending films at Pacific Place, as the deli is on the first floor.

  3. Thanks for the recommendations. I've been informed that the place on 5th no longer exists, but I'll take a stroll down there to see for myself.
    As for Fornaio, will be sure to check it out before my first Pacific Place screening, which I believe is Princess Raccoon on June 1st. Pastrami and Suzuki, what a combo!