The documentary “Love, Gilda,” a look at the life of ground-breaking comedian Gilda Radner, will open the 17th Tribeca Film Festival, the group announced Wednesday.
It is the sixth straight year the fest kicks off with a documentary and the second time in four years that the opener touches on “Saturday Night Live,” where Radner was a standout during the magical early years. (The 2015 festival opened with a retrospective of the sketch-comedy institution called “Live from New York!”)
Tribeca CEO Jane Rosenthal said in a statement, “As a Festival that has always supported women’s voices and is largely run by women we are incredibly proud to celebrate the inimitable voice of Gilda during the opening night of our Festival.”
According to her obituary in The New York Times, Radner was the first person chosen by Lorne Michaels when he decided to launch “SNL” in 1975. She was best-known for her portrayal of Roseanne Roseannadanna — the brassy, trapezoid-haired, meandering advice columnist on “Weekend Update.”
She won an Emmy for her work on the show in 1977, but left in 1980. Subsequent works included the 1982 film “Hanky Panky,” where she met Gene Wilder. The two married in 1984 but only had a short time together as Radner died of ovarian cancer in 1989 at age 42.
The documentary, directed by Lisa D’Apolito, will premiere at the Beacon Theatre on April 18 and feature interviews with Michaels, Amy Poehler, Maya Rudolph, Martin Short and others. Tickets go on sale March 20.