Richard Benjamin
A Conversation with Richard Benjamin
(Director / Producer)

Q: Why is it called THE GOODBYE GIRL?
A: Paula is the goodbye girl. They always leave her. She loves being in love and always falls in love with the wrong guys. Now, she's finally found the right one.

Q: Did you have any hesitations with doing a remake?
A: When you get the chance to do a romantic comedy of this quality writing, you can't pass it up. No one writes them like Neil. It is also a love letter to New York. In this time when so much has changed and so much has shifted, I wanted to do a movie that reintroduced that innocence back into the city. This film is filled with love and innocence.

Q: Was it difficult casting for this film?
A: There are only a handful of people that can do this movie. There is something in there that you can't teach. Neil thought of Patricia right from the start. She's the anchor for Everybody Loves Raymond. She brings a depth of reality to the show. Jeff was on the top of a very short list. His acting abilities cover a huge range, from Dumb & Dumber to The Hours. He can do anything.

Q: Since the script is very similar to the original version, do you think it will still work?
A: It's a true New York story. There's a guy and there's a girl. He's an actor coming to New York to make it after working regional theater for so long. He finally has his big break. That turns into a disaster, but, out of the disaster, two people fall in love. This has been going on for a long time. You can still do Romeo and Juliet today and it works. It's people interacting with people. It's beautifully designed and shot and all of the parts look great. However, those things are meant to support the script and cast. Patricia, Jeff and Hallie are just a dream. These are theater-trained people who show up with all of the lines learned. To do Neil Simon's work, you have to know the dialogue. The rhythm of this script is perfection, and you can't mess with that.

Thu., Apr. 17, 2014
6/5c Castle
7/6c Castle
8/7c Castle

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