It’s hard to imagine Clive Owen, Emeril Lagasse, and The RZA together in anything but a pop-culture fever dream. But there they were on an unseasonably sticky Wednesday night at the Bon Appetit Supper Club, celebrating the New York premiere of Mr. Owen’s new movie The Boys are Back. The dinner—featuring Mr. Lagasse’s wild mushroom lasagne and an herb-crusted rack of lamb—followed a packed screening at Cinema 2 on Third Avenue.
Earlier in the evening all eyes were on Mr. Owen as he paused for photographs on the red carpet. “Oh my God, he’s handsome,” gasped one passerby.
“I think he’s dreamy,” said Reshma Shetty, the elegant co-star of USA’s Hamptons dramedy Royal Pains, which was recently picked up for a second season.
Writer/director Tony Gilroy, who directed Mr. Owen and Julia Roberts in Duplicity, also praised the actor. “He is a man without any issues,” Mr. Gilroy remarked.
The Observer tried to get some inside information on the as yet untitled Jason Bourne movie, reportedly due in 2011. Mr. Gilroy had written the three previous installments; was he penning the new one as well? “Nah, not working on it,” he said, before hustling up the stairs to find his seats.
In The Boys Are Back, Mr. Owen plays a sportswriter father in Australia who struggles to raise two sons—played by Ron Weasley look-alike George MacKay and an irresistible six-year-old Nicholas McAnulty—following the death of his wife. The Observer asked if he was a sports fan in real life.
“I’m a huge football fan,” Mr. Owen said. “Soccer, to you people.”
Besides Mr. Owen, the film’s other star might be southern Australia’s Adelaide coast, captured in dozens of loving shots by the Aussie director, Scott Hicks. “I hadn’t made a film there for about twelve years,” Mr. Hicks said. “I was able to set a story that I really cared about and really loved in a landscape that I also loved.”
The RZA, clad in full camo, caught the movie and later joined Mr. Owen at the VIP table. The two had bonded on the set on the 2005 movie Derailed, co-starring Jennifer Aniston.
“He’s a special kind of dude,” the hip-hop artist said. “Derailed was one of my early movies and I didn’t really have it yet. He made me feel comfortable with what I was doing. We wound up hanging out a few times, and now we sight each other out.”
The Observer was about to ask The RZA about his new book, The Tao of Wu, due from Riverhead in October, when Mr. Owen butted in. “You’re not interviewing him now, are you?” he asked, flashing his trademark wry grin before teasing his co-star: “It’s 24/7 for you, isn’t it?”