csaA Prairie Home Companion, opening this Friday, is a really wonderful film, a movie that makes you think maybe the Academy was a year premature when they gave Robert Altman that honorary Oscar – he could legitimately have won it for this movie. Today was the press junket for the film here in New York City, and although Robert Altman couldn’t make it (he has the flu… which at 81 makes me nervous), Garrison Keillor did show up to chat a bit about the movie and his radio show.

I’m not familiar with the A Prairie Home Companion radio show, but someone who is told me it was odd that the movie has no mention of Lake Wobegon, the fictional Minnesota town where "all the women are strong, all the men are good looking, and all children are above average," and which features in each week’s radio show. It turns out Keillor is saving Lake Wobegon for a movie all its own.

Says Keillor: “I still want to make a Lake Wobegon movie, and I still have my heart set on that, so I’m going to go ahead and do that in some way, shape or form. I had a great time making this so I want to do that.”

Would he direct the film? “I could. But I wouldn’t want to be in it. What could I play? A priest maybe. A sort of a dissolute priest. Norwegian bachelor farmer – I could do that.” I sense these are injokes for the initiated.

If a Lake Wobegon movie would be half as joyous as the A Prairie Home Companion movie, I’m there.