|Robert Redford speaks about his work in independent film
at the First Amendment Center, in Nashville Tennessee.
© 2001 Susan Adcock, Freelance.
so I'm trapped in a doorway with Robert Redford. No, really.
Invisible panic might be an accurate description as I am no
more than ten inches from his face. My camera is down
because we are just too close together for me to focus. Instead
of moving through the door, he's decided to finish a private
conversation with another man before approaching a small crowd
of fans, and the press. The door is against my back
when they turn to face each other and there is nowhere for
ahead of me, I can see a photographer for the daily, who is visibly
irritated already, that I am in his shot. I
try not to make eye contact with him. It isn't my goal to be in his
way but I have no choice. I look for an escape. There
is none. Through, around, or over the potted plant? I don't
think so. The daily guy begins to dance, now waving his free arm
not holding his camera) in the air. I try to vaporize myself. It
I decide the only way out is the space between them. I'd have
to brush through them however, causing them both to either step
back or not. The act of brushing, physically against the Sundance
Kid strikes me as a bad idea. I smell disaster, in front
of forty people. I see mayhem, followed by a broken ankle.
I resist. The
crowd stands frozen. They wait, most of them patiently, for
him to finish his conversation. The daily guy is stifling
a scream. I begin to feel reckless as I can see him
mouthing the word "MOVE."
Then something magical happened. A calm and slightly sarcastic
voice in my head (my own, I'm happy to report) said:
" When is the next time, Susan, that you will be trapped in a doorway
with Robert Redford?"
Do you or do you not have girlfriends who would empty their bank
accounts to be standing nearly on the toes of this man?"
(seven seconds to Nirvana)
Unfortunately, I think the daily guy heard the voice too because
that is about the time he came completely apart. The sound
of his impending tantrum caused the two men to move off
into the room, unaware of the micro drama that preceded it. I
let the door close, finally and watched as he and the legendary
movie star melted into the crowd.
Since then, everyone asks: "Did he look old?"
Well let's see, brilliant mind, generous spirit, unmatched professionalism,
and twenty five years later all people really want to know is "did
he look old?"
NO. He did not look old. He looked beautiful. He looked
exactly like he looked in 1975. Better. And, if he had asked me to
hold on to the bumper of his car, I would have gone off to