Ellar Coltrane and Richard Linklater
Ellar Coltrane and Richard Linklater

On Wednesday evening, guests gathered for the opening night of the sixth annual BAMcinemaFest and the long-anticipated New York premiere of Richard Linklater’s Boyhood. Shot over the course of 12 years, the drama follows a boy named Mason (played by Ellar Coltrane) from the ages of seven to 18. The screening drew directors Darren Aronofsky, Bennett Miller, Julie Taymor, and Gia Coppola; and actors Maggie Gyllenhaal, Jonathan Groff, and Jenny Slate. “It’s kind of hard to describe this movie,” said Linklater, introducing the film. “Suffice it to say it’s been this really fascinating life project for everyone involved. I did the math earlier and 4,356 days ago we started this thing and I’m just thrilled that people are finally getting to see it.”

After the movie, guests migrated to Skylight One Hanson, where all eyes were on Coltrane. With a glow-in-the-dark Phantom of the Opera t-shirt under his suit, the now-19-year-old reflected on the project. “As much as [Mason] was a crafted character, watching it, it’s me. It feels fucking crazy,” he said. “It’s a lot to handle, but it’s good. I feel like I’m kind of perpetually forgetting who I am and to see it brings it all back.” When asked if he had any theatrical endeavors on the horizon, the young star replied coolly, “Depends on the project.” Spoken like a true pro.