The Schmooze

Q&A: Susan Seidelman on Adversity and Success

When Susan Seidelman released her first film, “Smithereens,” in 1982, she was still among the first female Hollywood directors. The film was a success, and was selected for competition at Cannes. She followed that with “Desperately Seeking Susan,” which featured a very young Madonna, some films that failed to gain traction (“Cookie,” “She Devil”) and more recently, “Boynton Beach Club.”

Seidelman’s new project is “Musical Chairs,” an inspiring film about how the human spirit can overcome the worst tragedies. The movie tells the story of a dance instructor who is partially paralyzed in a car accident just before an important competition. Ultimately, she reclaims her life and finds love, in part thanks to a wheelchair dance tournament. The film opened this week in New York and Florida, and March 30 in Los Angeles and Chicago.

Seidelman, 59, spoke to The Arty Semite about her new film, her career, and her mom, who wrote the first draft of “Boynton Beach Club.”

Curt Schleier: Is there a story behind “Musical Chairs”?

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Q&A: Susan Seidelman on Adversity and Success

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