Knicks owner banned Woody Allen from MSG’s VIP Lounge?!
According to the New York Post, Knicks team owner James Dolan has banned ultimate Knicks fan, New York Icon and my 2nd favorite film director of all-time, Woody Allen, from the VIP Lounge at Madison Square Garden because he refused to do what he rarely ever does for Dreamworks, MGM or any other studio over the last three decades – promotional work. Dolan wanted the famous filmmaker from the Bronx to do some promos for the MSG Network or the Garden of Dreams Foundation but shouldn’t have been surprised when he was rejected by the man who rather play in his band then show up to the Oscars on the night Annie Hall (best comedy ever IMO) won 4 Oscars with 2 of them going to Allen.
“He got a call from someone at MSG saying they had bought the rights to air several of Woody’s movies on the MSG channel and wanted Woody to go on the air and talk about his movies or introduce them,” a Woody source told me.
“Woody said he would not be comfortable doing that. He has never done that for any show or network. They then said that this was a ‘reciprocal arrangement’ and that if Woody couldn’t go on TV for them, he should not eat in their VIP restaurant anymore. Woody said fine and thanked them for the many years he had enjoyed the space there.”
A Garden spokesman politely declined to comment but pointed out that Allen — unlike Spike Lee (who has worked on documentaries about the team) and Matthew Modine — has never done anything to help the team or Dolan’s youth charity, Garden of Dreams (of which Modine is a board member).
To the Garden spokesperson that pointed out Woody “has never done anything to help the team,” I would argue the same could be said about a lot of players on the Knicks roster over the past couple of decades. Actually, a few of those players I’m referencing have cost the team a pretty Penny (Hardaway) and Woody’s presence at the Garden has always been great intangible for the business. I’m also assuming that spokesperson never saw Woody’s “Celebrity” which featured ex Knick Anthony Mason…with lines of dialogue and without a basketball.
Back to Dolan, I would also love to see Woody Allen introduce his films on the MSG channel but I’m just shocked that he was shocked that an artist, that has refused decade after decade to record an audio commentary track to the studios that give him an annual $10-20 million budget with 100% creative freedom and final cut, would go against his ways and make Dolan an exception.
Just in case you are a bigger fan of Woody than Dolan then make sure you check out his upcoming film “Blue Jasmine” and here’s my Top 20 Woody Allen Films.
- Annie Hall
- Stardust Memories
- Deconstructing Harry
- Everyone Says I Love You
- Crimes and Misdemeanors
- Match Point
- Midnight In Paris
- Midnight in Paris
- Mighty Aphrodite
- Husbands and Wives
- Hannah and her Sisters
- Vicky Cristina Barcelona
- Small Time Crooks
- Everything You Wanted To Know About Sex But Were Afraid To Ask
- Anything Else
- Bullets Over Broadway
- To Rome With Love