The Tribeca Film festival kicked off with a tribute to native New Yorker Clive Davis at Radio City Music Hall.
The 85-year old music mogul walked a star-studded red carpet in New York, Wednesday (19 APRIL) with the likes of Robert De Niro, Jennifer Hudson, and Gov. Andrew Cuomo, for "Clive Davis: The Soundtrack of Our Lives" .
The man brought the world such artists as Whitney Houston, Barry Manilow, and Alicia Keys called the honor, "A dream come true."
"First of all, to have a film made of your life, second of all, for it to open here at Radio City. I grew up in Brooklyn, and the first time I got to Manhattan was when I was 13 years old and where did I go? To Radio City Music Hall, so to be back here now at Tribeca to be the debut opening film is beyond comprehension," Davis said.
Directed by Chris Perkel, the film is based on Davis' 2013 autobiography of the same name.
Davis signed Hudson to J records after her American idol appearance, and won a Grammy for producing her debut album.
"The legacy of Clive Davis, it is music. He has made such a huge contribution to music, so to be here, to be a part of it, and for him to make such a treasure and then share it with the world is a gift for us all to have. So that's why I am so happy and honored to be here to witness it, and also be a part of it," Hudson said.
Many other artists Davis signed to recording contracts were at the event, including Manilow, who declined to speak to press. Comedian Gilbert Gottfried honored him anyway, by singing a few bars of "Ready to Take a Chance Again."
Former supermodel Beverly Johnson spoke of Davis' contribution, as well as the overall importance of music, especially in these trying times.
"Gosh, it's a lifeline actually. Not only that, but it's really an expression of really the times. Through art we can change the world, and I think that we're going (to be) really leaning on our artists more than ever because of the situation we are in," Johnson said.
Johnson, who in 2014, wrote a magazine article claiming Bill Cosby drugged her in an attempt to sexually assault her during a meeting in his apartment in the 1980s, also commented on Fox News parting ways with commentator Bill O'Reilly amid sexual harassment allegations.
"Well I really acknowledge the fact that women are having a voice and a say, and that we are not second class citizens. So as long as the needle is moving, and we're moving forward, it's always a good thing," Johnson said.
The star-studded carpet included Peter Fonda, Carly Simon, Ray Parker Jr., and Judy Collins.
De Niro, Jane Rosenthal, and Craig Hatkoff founded The Tribeca Film Festival in 2002 after the September 11 terror attacks, to help economically revive the neighborhood. While the festival has enjoyed increasing success since its inception, De Niro claims it's always a struggle to keep it going.
"It's always good every year that we actually are able to open it, because it's very difficult. We're not a festival that's sponsored by the state, by anybody. We need sponsors, so we don't - it's always a lot of hard work to get people to put money into these venues. It's not that easy. It's that simple. This is not like Cannes or Toronto, where they get money from the state. We don't get any money from the state," De Niro said.
"Clive Davis: The Soundtrack of Our Lives" was purchased on Wednesday by Apple Music.
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