Truman and Tennessee: An Intimate Conversation

USA | 2020 | 86 minutes | Lisa Immordino Vreeland

Now Playing - Apr 18, 2021

Featuring the voices of Jim Parsons and Zachary Quinto as the eponymous duo, this dual-portrait documentary from director Lisa Immordino Vreeland (Love, Cecil) charts the friendship and professional rivalry between author Truman Capote and playwright Tennessee Williams.

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Documentaries as Documents

Join us as we discuss two documentary filmmakers who told the stories of some of the pillars of American culture: Sesame Street, Truman Capote, and Tennessee Williams.

“I was 16 years-old when I met him,” Truman Capote reminisced of his dear friend Tennessee Williams upon the latter’s death. “He was 13 years older than I was, a waiter, and an aspiring playwright. We became great friends.” Yet their relationship was both profound and tempestuous. Both were openly gay men from the South who fled to New York City in search of literary success. Each would attain it, becoming famous in the process, though this celebrity, particularly later in life, often eclipsed their artistic achievements. Personal heartbreaks, creative failures, and substance abuse damaged both men, straining their friendship to the point where Capote and Williams publicly traded unsparing, malefic critiques of each other. Filmmaker Lisa Immordino Vreeland uses archival interviews and extensive excerpts from the writers’ letters, diaries, and published works to chart the parallel development of their lives and careers. Giving voice to these words, Jim Parsons and Zachary Quinto—as Capote and Williams respectively—channel the personality, voice, and distinctive wit of each author, reinvigorating their enduring works for generations new and old. What emerges is a cinematic collage that provides illuminating insight into the towering talent and troubled psyches of two great American writers.

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Director Biography
Lisa Immordino Vreeland has been immersed in the world of fashion and art for the past 25 years. Her first book was accompanied by her directorial debut of the documentary of the same name, Diana Vreeland: The Eye Has To Travel (2012). The film had its European premiere at the Venice Film Festival and its North American premiere at the Telluride Film Festival. It went on to win the Silver Hugo at the Chicago Film Festival and the fashion category for the Design of the Year Awards—otherwise known as “The Oscars” of design — at the Design Museum in London. Her second film Peggy Guggenheim: Art Addict (2015) premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival and had its European premiere at Art Basel. Love, Cecil (2017) premiered at the Telluride Film Festival and went on to win the Audience Award at the Hamptons International Film Festival. It was accompanied by her second book “Love, Cecil” published by Abrams. In addition, Immordino Vreeland directs the award-winning short documentary series “Art of Style” for M2M (Made to Measure).

  • Director: Lisa Immordino Vreeland
  • Principal Cast: Voices: Jim Parsons, Zachary Quinto
  • Premiere Status: Seattle
  • Country: USA
  • Year: 2020
  • Running Time: 86 minutes
  • Producer: Lisa Immordino Vreeland, Mark Lee, Jonathan Gray, John Northrup
  • Screenplay: Shane Sigler
  • Cinematographers: Bernadine Colish
  • Music: Madi
  • Filmography: Love, Cecil (2017); Peggy Guggenheim: Art Addict (2015); Diana Vreeland: The Eye Has to Travel (2011)
  • US Distributor: Kino Lorber
  • International Sales: Dogwoof