Pacino as Paterno, and Who Is That Producer? Anthony Scaramucci


At the “Paterno” premiere on Monday, boldface names like Allison Janney and Jeffrey Wright joined a wolfish-looking Mr. Pacino for a reception at Porter House in Manhattan, where the three-course dinner featured filet mignon and a football-size slice of coconut cake.

Absent from the festivities was Mr. Scaramucci. HBO, the home of liberal darlings like Bill Maher and John Oliver, did not confirm whether or not the Mooch had been asked to attend.

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“I just gave them the dough,” Mr. Scaramucci said this week.

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Ariel Schalit/Associated Press

“Anthony Scaramucci has a co-executive producer credit on ‘Paterno’ based on early financing he brought to the project prior to HBO’s involvement,” a network spokesman wrote by email.

Mr. Scaramucci said Mr. Pressman had invited him to the premiere, but “unfortunately, I had a prior engagement in L.A.”

“Paterno” is not the first entry on Mr. Scaramucci’s cinematic resume.

He was the executive producer of “Big Words,” a 2013 film about a group of failed rappers in Brooklyn set on the eve of Barack Obama’s election. He co-produced “The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete,” also from 2013 and also about a group of African-American friends in Brooklyn.

He met Mr. Pressman during the filming of “Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps,” Oliver Stone’s 2010 sequel to his 1987 film. The sequel included a walk-on role for Mr. Scaramucci, who spent his pre-political life as a financier.

The two men pursued a few projects — at one point negotiating with Jackie Robinson’s widow about a biopic of the baseball star — and eventually zeroed in on Joe Posnanski’s 2012 biography, “Paterno.” (The book was used as source material for the HBO film; the journalist Sara Ganim, who won a Pulitzer Prize for her coverage of the Penn State scandal, was a consultant on the project.)

“He liked the experience of ‘Wall Street,’ and he liked the business as a sideline,” Mr. Pressman said.

The Trump administration no longer employs Mr. Scaramucci, but it retains at least one aspiring movie mogul: Steven Mnuchin, the Treasury secretary, who was an executive producer of “Mad Max: Fury Road” and other major pictures and is married to Louise Linton, a producer and occasional actress.

Mr. Scaramucci, who has also invested in a Manhattan restaurant, the Hunt & Fish Club, and the New York Mets, indicated on the phone that Hollywood was unlikely to be his sole focus. Still, he mustered up a bit of the showbiz hard sell.

“What’d you think of the movie?” he asked. “It was great.”

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What’s Cooking in That Egg Spoon? A Bite-Size Culture War


Kat Kinsman, the senior food and drinks editor of the website Extra Crispy, devoted a column to what she saw as the inherent sexism in the egg-spoon attacks. If Francis Mallmann, the subject of a recent Esquire profile titled “Is Francis Mallmann the Most Interesting Chef in the World?,” had cooked an egg with a spoon instead of roasting a lamb on a wooden cross near blazing wood, he’d be a hero, she wrote. (Ms. Waters, incidentally, has given Mr. Mallmann one of her own beloved egg spoons.)

The new round of criticism also struck a nerve with Samin Nosrat, a cookbook author and New York Times Magazine columnist. Cooking an egg in an iron spoon over open fire is really no more precious and probably a lot less elitist than cooking an egg in $300 sous-vide machine, she said in a recent interview — except that women tend to do the former and men the latter.

“Is it any more practical to sous-vide an egg? No,” she said. “But it’s this amazing thing because a man is using it.” Consider the chef Dan Barber of Blue Hill at Stone Barns in Pocantico Hills, N.Y. When he celebrates these same ideals, she said, “he gets a hagiographic ‘Chef’s Table’ episode. It pisses me off.”

And now, the latest salvo: In Slow Food’s version of an in-your-face move, Alice Waters’s daughter, Fanny Singer, has introduced an egg spoon for sale through her website Permanent Collection.

The 16-inch iron spoon is hand-forged to Ms. Waters specifications by Shawn Lovell, whom Ms. Singer described in an email as “an incredible female blacksmith in Alameda, CA.”

The spoon costs $250. Five percent of each sale will go to the Edible Schoolyard Project, which began after Ms. Waters made gardening and cooking in schools her life’s work.

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The famous Alice Waters egg spoon, now on sale for $250.

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Alex Welsh for The New York Times

Ms. Waters has never marketed frying pans or signed her name to stoves. But this time the stakes were high enough, Ms. Singer said: “This is attitudinal and atmospheric.”

Still, $250 for a spoon? Doesn’t that just play into the hands of the haters?

“The price of the spoon is beside the point,” Ms. Singer said. “What’s ridiculous is that we treat men and women differently. I have never heard the word ‘precious’ used with a man who has promoted some little specialized gadget.”

For her part, Ms. Waters is as much a supportive parent as she is the figurehead of the spoon wing of the #MeToo movement. “It is hilarious,” she said, “but in another way, I want young boys to hold that spoon, too. I want them to feel the sense of the fire and the closeness to the simplicity of it. It helps you become sensitive. We are hoping men become sensitive and we find each other in that place.”

And what of Mr. Bourdain, the original egg-spoon skeptic? He concedes that there is a bit of sexism baked into the egg-spoon wars, but for him, the issue isn’t gender equity. It’s stupidity.

“I am quite sure male chefs have committed far, far worse crimes in the cause of pretentious and pomposity,” he said. “There is plenty of silliness out there to make fun of on both sides.”

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