Anyone who grew up in the 1980s – and many of us who didn’t - can recite Blanche Baker’s lines as Ginny in “Sixteen Candles” by heart.
“I really love Rudy. He is totally enamored of me. I mean, I've had men who've loved me before, but not for six months in a row.”
With lines like that, the John Hughes film is a cultural touchstone and Emmy-winner Baker will host a screening at 9 p.m. Oct. 15 in Dante Hall Theater as part of the 9th Atlantic City Cinefest. Baker will also be honored with a Lifesaver Award at the festival and participate in the panel discussion Saturday afternoon at 1 p.m. in Dante Hall.
“Looking back, I realize what we were doing in `Sixteen Candles’ was identifying issues that are common to almost everyone at some point in their lives: feeling unappreciated, misunderstood, awkward, lonely and unable to fit in,” Baker said.
Hughes encouraged improvisation, she said. “At the time I made `Sixteen Candles,’ I was studying with Uta Hagen and Lee Strasberg, who both based their teachings on Stanislavsky. When you are acting, experience and technique give you the confidence to let go and be creative.”
Baker considers working with Andrzej Wajda at the Yale Repertory Theatre as a pivotal moment in her career. “Working with Meryl Streep in `The Seduction of Joe Tynan’ and `Holocaust’ is another highlight. She’s a master artist with so many layers to her work.”
The actress is currently writing and directing a short movie musical called “Streetwrite” about freedom of speech. Her resume also includes “The Handmaid’s Tale” with Robert Duvall, “Raw Deal” with Arnold Schwarzenegger and the Kevin Bacon HBO film “Taking Chance.” Baker is on the faculty at the New York Film Academy.
Atlantic City Cinefest will present more than 50 feature, short and documentary films. The film festival will serve up a mix of comedy, drama, horror and science fiction, many from New Jersey filmmakers. For more details, visit atlanticcitycinefest.org.
Tickets for “Sixteen Candles” are $5. A weekend pass for the festival is $40; $25 for a day pass and $5 for a single block of films. Purchase at Dante Hall and Arts Garage or visit www.atlanticcitycinefest.org or www.stockton.edu/dante
Atlantic City Cinefest celebrates the art form of independent moviemaking. The festival has hosted Kevin Smith, Terry Winter, Robert Downey, Sr., Scott Rosenfelt, William Forsythe, Dominique Swain and Brian O'Halloran during the first eight years. Presented by Downbeach Film Festival, the Cinefest shows movies at Dante Hall Theater, 14 N. Mississippi Avenue and the Noyes Arts Garage, 2200 Fairmount Avenue. Both venues are managed by Stockton University.
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