Ella Brennan: Commanding the Table


Century Larkspur 2 Sat, Oct 15, 2016 7:00 PM
Film Info
Section:Valley of the Docs
Focus: Culinary Cinema
Mind the Gap
Running Time:96 min.
Director:Leslie Iwerks
Producer:Leslie Iwerks
Debra Shriver
Karol Martesko-Fenster
Michael E. Tang
Screenwriter:Leslie Iwerks
Cinematographer:Steve Parker
Antonio Rossi
Tony Arenth
Editor:Mo Stoebe
Print Source:Iwerks & Co.
Note Writer:Alexis Whitham


FOCUS: CULINARY CINEMA A celebrity restaurateur before there were celebrity chefs, nonagenarian Ella Brennan is a James Beard Lifetime Achievement Award winner and influencer of culinary staples ranging from Bananas Foster to the farm-to-table movement. Her acolytes include star chefs Emeril Lagasse and Paul Prudhomme, but this vibrant matriarch redefined American cuisine through her impeccable palate and an unrivaled joie de vivre. Leslie Iwerks’ warming documentary looks back on Brennan through decades, from her teen years learning the ropes in 1940s New Orleans. Balancing the family and the family business for over half a century, Brennan has inspired and collaborated with generations of chefs, ultimately launching cuisine that marries French fine dining with soulful Louisiana creole. With Ella’s welcoming personality jumping off the screen and plates of shrimp crawling by, it’s easy to be enamored with the Brennan legacy. It’s perhaps harder to refrain from booking a flight to New Orleans to experience the magic in person.


Thanks to our Community Partners La Cocina and www.EatDrinkFilms.com

Sponsored by:

Thanks to our Community Partner La Cocina

Additional Information

Leslie Iwerks is an award-winning director and producer. Her short documentary Recycled Life, chronicling the people living in the largest landfill in Guatemala, was nominated for an Academy Award, and her acclaimed documentary The Pixar Story was nominated for an Emmy. Her body of work encompasses enterprise feature films (Citizen Hearst, ILM: Creating the Impossible, The Imagineering Story) to her acclaimed environmental and social issue documentaries (Pipe Dreams, Downstream, Dirty Oil). Leslie’s first feature documentary The Hand Behind the Mouse tells the story of her grandfather, Ub Iwerks, Disney animation legend and designer of Mickey Mouse. Her production company, Iwerks & Co., is based in Santa Monica, Caifornia.