The MOMS Denise Albert and Melissa Musen Gerstein, with Kmart and Peter Pan Simply Ground Peanut Butter, hosted a Mamarazzi® Event and conversation with Susan Sarandon, Rose Byrne, Lorene Scafaria and Joy Gorman Wettels on Monday, April 18th, 2016 at the Crosby Street Theater. The event brought together influential moms and media for a special advance screening of new film The Meddler, an endearing comedy which arrives in cinemas right in time for Mother’s Day. The movie, which is produced by Joy Gorman Wettels, has been described as “A valentine to mothers everywhere”. It tells the story of an eternally optimistic mother who moves from New Jersey to Los Angeles to be closer to her daughter, a successful screenwriter, and smother her with motherly love.
Before the screening, guests gathered outside the theater for interactive displays with event co-hosts Peter Pan Simply Ground Peanut Butter and Kmart. Peter Pan Simply Ground Peanut Butter offered guests delicious recipes and provided a build-your-own dipping station where guests could create their own custom peanut butter treats. Kmart showcased spring apparel items and passed out swag bags with giveaways, product information and gift cards. Immediately following the screening, Susan Sarandon, Rose Byrne, Lorene Scafaria and Joy Gorman Wettels sat down for a Q & A with The MOMS Denise Albert and Melissa Gerstein where they discussed their new movie The Meddler.
In the Q&A, Susan Sarandon lightheartedly offered insights into the challenges of motherhood and raising teenagers. Sarandon said she usually has too busy a schedule to do too much meddling herself, but rather she and her children tend to meddle an equal amount back and forth. Sarandon does think, however, that “it is better to overstep than not to meddle” and brought up some examples from her own children’s pre-teen and teenage years where she was always very much involved and inquisitive as to what the youngsters were up to. She pointed out that although they may have not appreciated it at the time, they hopefully saw later on that this was all out of concern for them and appreciated it as a way of wanting to be there for them. She also brought up the issue of boys and girls being raised differently, which contributes to many of the stereotypes we see today. The actress herself made it her mission to instill a sense of responsibility in her boys and ensure they realize that they are not only responsible for their own actions but also for the feeling of others. As a parent she believes in openness and to anticipate issues with your children, which was something she was happy to share with the audience at the movie screening.
Rose Byrne, who is a new mother, discussed the somewhat sleep deprived but wonderful first months of motherhood and how it has been a dream come true to star in a movie with Sarandon. Byrne said it has been great to play Sarandon’s daughter in the film, and that Sarandon has been great in offerering advice on motherhood and answer any all all questions that she may have had. Byrne also jokingly added that everything does take surprisingly much longer with a baby on tow, and that even leaving the house can take two hours because when you are finally out the door, it is time for another diaper change!
Writer/Director Lorene Scafaria told the audience about how she managed to get Sarandon on board for the movie (apparently she sent Sarandon a 5 minute clip with her own mother playing Marnie, the mother, which convinced Sarandon to take the part!) and how they as a team spent 3-4 month to get all the funding and resources together before they could finally start filming. Scafaria is a long-time fan of Sarandon and the movies she’s starred in. She also mentioned how she personally admires Sarandon’s warm and generous persona, and the fact that Sarandon is actively supporting various social and political causes. The feeling seems perfectly mutual, as Sarandon expressedly said she laughed out loud when she first read the movie script and was incredibly moved by the story and the characters that Scafaria had created.
The Meddler is a heartwarming film which suits all ages 13 and up that highlights important aspects of personal connections, motherhood, and relationships – some of Susan Sarandon’s favorite ingredients for starring in a film.
ABOUT THE MEDDLER
With a new iPhone, an apartment near the Grove, and a comfortable bank account left to her by her beloved late husband, Marnie Minervini has happily relocated from New Jersey to Los Angeles to be near her daughter Lori, a successful (but still single) screenwriter, and smother her with motherly love. But when the dozens of texts, unexpected visits, and conversations dominated by unsolicited advice force Lori to draw strict personal boundaries, Marnie finds ways to channel her eternal optimism and forceful generosity to change the lives of others – as well as her own – and find a new purpose in life.
ABOUT THE MOMS: (www.themoms.com)
The Moms is a multi-platform lifestyle brand that celebrates–and puts a spotlight on–modern motherhood. Through their numerous broadcast appearances, SiriusXM satellite radio show and blog, Denise Albert and Melissa Musen Gerstein tackle topics both big and small that resonate with moms today. Their brutally honest–and sometimes conflicting–opinions are not only entertaining, but take the parenting conversation to a whole new level. Through their experiential events, everyday moms become celebrities, and celebrities reveal their lives as an everyday mom (or dad!). Strut, the Fashionable Moms Fashion show, showcases real moms walking the runway at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week wearing affordable and fashionable clothing that can be bought in-season. The ever-popular Mamarazzi® events provide influential moms and media with access to celebrity parents in a town-hall discussion. Mamarazzi guests have included Sarah Jessica Parker, Will Smith, Jada Pinkett Smith, Jennifer Garner, Kevin James, Elizabeth Banks, Tina Fey, Hugh Jackman and Pitbull. Whether they’re online, on TV, radio, or face-to-face, The Moms engage their audience with straight talk, a sense of humor and a healthy dose of fun—kind of like parenting itself.
ABOUT SUSAN SARANDON:
Susan Sarandon is an American actress. She is an Academy Award and BAFTA Award winner who is also known for her social and political activism for a variety of liberal causes. She was appointed a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador in 1999 and received the Action Against Hunger Humanitarian Award in 2006.
ABOUT ROSE BYRNE:
Rose Byrne is an Australian actress. Byrne made her screen debut in 1992 with a small role in the film Dallas Doll. In 2000, she played a leading role in the Australian film The Goddess of 1967, which brought her a Venice Film Festival award for Best Actress. From 2007 to 2012, she played Ellen Parsons in the cable television series Damages, which earned her two Golden Globe and two Emmy nominations. Along with co-star Glenn Close, she appeared in all of the show’s fifty-nine episodes. Byrne has also starred in the films Troy, 28 Weeks Later, Insidious, X-Men: First Class, as well as the comedies Bridesmaids, Neighbors and Spy.
ABOUT LORENE SCAFARI:
Lorene Scafaria is an American screenwriter, playwright, actress, singer, and film director. She is best known for her work on the films Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist and Seeking a Friend for the End of the World, the latter her debut as director in 2012.
ABOUT JOY GORMAN WETTELS:
Joy Gorman Wettels is a Producer of TV, Film and Theater at Anonymous Content. Founded by Steve Golin, Anonymous produced this year’s Best Picture Winners THE REVENANT and SPOTLIGHT as well as Golden Globe winning series Mr. Robot and True Detective. At Anonymous, Joy focuses on socially impactful and positive content for Women and Youth and advocates for diverse filmmakers. She most recently produced Lorene Scafaria’s upcoming film THE MEDDLER for Sony Pictures Classics (Official Selection: 2015 Toronto International Film Festival, 2016 Tribeca Film Festival) which stars Susan Sarandon, Rose Byrne and JK Simmons. Previously, Joy produced Scafaria’s directorial debut SEEKING A FRIEND FOR THE END OF THE WORLD starring Steve Carell and Keira Knightley for Focus Features and Scott Coffey’s ADULT WORLD starring John Cusack and Emma Roberts (Tribeca Film Festival/ IFC). Joy is an Executive Producer with Selena Gomez on the upcoming Netflix/Paramount series adaptation of NY Times Bestselling Novel 13 REASONS WHY. The series is created by Brian Yorkey, writer of Tony and Pulitzer Prize winning Broadway musical NEXT TO NORMAL and will be directed by Oscar Winner Tom McCarthy. Among other projects, Joy is currently developing a TV series about women in the tech world with Paul Feig; a film adaptation of NEXT TO NORMAL with Yorkey and composer Tom Kitt and a multi-media project based on acclaimed Civil Rights Era Documentary series EYES ON THE PRIZE with Nate Parker.
Prior to Anonymous, Joy was Vice President of Production at Robert Simonds Company and worked in production, development and post-production at Miramax Films in New York. In 2007, Joy was named one of The Hollywood Reporter’s NEXT GENERATION / “35 under 35”. Joy grew up in Yonkers, New York and commuted to Barnard College of Columbia University, where she graduated with a degree in Urban Affairs and Political Science, completing her thesis on the federal desegregation case that re-defined her hometown. When she wasn’t working several jobs to pay for college, she spent her time on the famed Columbia Varsity Show, where she produced one of Brian Yorkey and Tom Kitt’s earliest musical collaborations. Joy is a member of the Producers Guild of America.
ABOUT KMART: (http://www.kmart.com/)
Kmart is making shopping fun again! The retailer, a subsidiary of Sears Holdings Corporation (NASDAQ: SHLD), is bringing back the iconic Bluelight Specials, hosting Freebie Saturdays and in-store family events for its Shop Your Way members and customers. Kmart offers customers thrilling deals and amazing finds on quality products and exclusive brands including Jaclyn Smith, Joe Boxer, Route 66 and Smart Sense.
ABOUT PETER PAN SIMPLY GROUND: (http://www.peterpanpb.com/)
Adventure is at the heart of Peter Pan Peanut Butter. The brand is pushing the boundaries of traditional peanut butters with a variety of creamy and crunchy options including new, Peter Pan Simply Ground. Simply Ground is creamy with a bit of crunch, and eliminates the limitations of spreadable and dippable peanut butters: it spreads evenly on bread without tearing it, and there’s no need to stir before you enjoy it. All Peter Pan Peanut Butters are made in the peanut capital of the world, Sylvester, Georgia with locally harvested peanuts. Peter Pan Peanut Butter is available in Original, Natural and Reduced Fat varieties and include honey roasted options.
ABOUT CONAGRA FOODS: (www.conagrafoods.com)
ConAgra Foods, Inc., (NYSE:CAG) is one of North America’s largest packaged food companies with branded and private label food found in 99 percent of America’s households, as well as a strong commercial foods business serving restaurants and foodservice operations globally. Consumers can find recognized brands such as Marie Callender’s®, Healthy Choice®, Slim Jim®, Hebrew National®, Orville Redenbacher’s®, Peter Pan®, Reddi-wip®, PAM®, Snack Pack®, Banquet®, Chef Boyardee®, Egg Beaters®, Hunt’s® and many other ConAgra Foods brands, along with food sold by ConAgra Foods under private labels, in grocery, convenience, mass merchandise, club and drug stores. Additionally, ConAgra Foods supplies frozen potato and sweet potato products as well as other vegetable, spice, and bakery products to commercial and foodservice customers. ConAgra Foods operates ReadySetEat.com, an interactive recipe website that provides consumers with easy dinner recipes and more.