Joan Collins has won the best actress award at the New York City International film Festival for her stellar performance as an aging sex symbol in the dark, weird comedy “Fetish,” a LMDQ LLC production.
Collins made television history playing the sultry, conniving vixen, Alexis Carrington Colby, on the legendary night-time soap opera “Dynasty.”
In her new short movie, directed by Matthew Pellowski, Collins–who has demonstrated that she can chew the scenery in campy roles–shows off her genuine acting chops. In “Fetish,” Collins offers a delicate balance of loopy comedy and tragic fragility.
The film received a standing ovation at the Manhattan screening last Monday night at New World Stages Theater in Times Square, with an audience that included columnist Liz Smith, who commented on Collins, “Her beauty and her flamboyant style have sometimes obscured just how nuanced a performer she is.
Those nuances are apparent in ‘Fetish’ where she conveys a surprising vulnerability.”
“Fetish,” written by and co-starring Charles Casillo, is a stylized piece which examines modern-day fame contrasted with loneliness, obsession and desperation by exploring the bizarre relationship between a fading movie star with an eccentric talk show host.
New York City International Film Festival president, Roberto Rizzo, said that he was blown away by Collins’ “tender, lovely performance,” adding, “She stunned the festival judges creating a completely different kind of character than the ones she is best known for.”
Collins, who was in Europe during the award ceremony Thursday night, taped a heartfelt acceptance speech thanking the director, writer, and producers.
“Fetish” has already had a sensational premiere screening at the Academy Award-qualifying “LA Shorts Fest,” where the Hollywood audience was floored by Collins’ performance in a festival that included short films starring Christina Ricci, Kate Bosworth, Janeane Garofalo, Jack Black, Jason Patric, Jason Biggs, and Will Ferrell.
Working with a young and talented crew, Collins discarded the glamour and threw herself into the work winning the admiration of everyone from the executive producers to production interns.
Matt Pellowski, the 31 year old director commented, “working with Joan was an absolute pleasure. She’s an icon, beautiful, smart, witty, talented and extremely dedicated to her craft. Her hard work and resilience was inspiring to the entire cast and crew.”
Writer and co-star Casillo said, “‘Fetish’ is only 28 minutes but Joan is on screen for every moment.
It was a tight shooting schedule during a Manhattan blizzard but Joan worked long hours often shooting four pages of dialogue a day.”
Her passion and dedication pays off in the movie. “With her performance she really takes the audience on a journey,” Casillo says. “It’s an enormously compelling character study of a beautiful, fragile celebrity coming undone.
Through the course of the story, Joan drops the character’s bravado and manufactured allure and reveals the aching sensitivity underneath.
But she doesn’t do it immediately. She slowly sheds layer after layer of a glitzy facade until, near the end, you actually feel her unraveling.”