April 24, 2012

Shelter Island Library Screens Arsenic and Old Lace on April 24

The Shelter Island Public Library series “Movies at the Library” will continue on Tuesday, April 24, 2012, with a screening of Arsenic and Old Lace (1944). However, while renovations to the library’s facilities on the lower level continue, the film will be shown at the Center Firehouse, which is generously providing their training room with its large screen and surround sound.

The program begins at 7 pm. Admission is free, and free bottled water and popcorn will be available.

The Center Firehouse is located at 49 North Ferry Road, in Shelter Island, NY.

Parking is located at the rear of the firehouse, with stairs and an elevator to the screening room.

Arsenic and Old Lace was Peter Lorre’s third movie at Warner Bros., following The Maltese Falcon and All Through the Night, shot in the fall of 1941, but not released until October of 1944. Not yet under contract to the studio, Peter would be called back to the studio for a few more movies before finally becoming a member of the Warners stock company.

In September 1978, Stephen Youngkin interviewed director Frank Capra for the authorized Lorre biography The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre (University Press of Kentucky, 2005). The director discussed the making of Arsenic and Old Lace and working with Peter, who was Capra’s first choice for the role of the plastic surgeon Dr Einstein to Raymond Massey’s killer, Jonathan Brewster.

Years later, Peter Lorre would reprise the character for television’s The Best of Broadway (Jan. 5, 1955) – opposite Boris Karloff as Jonathan, who had created the role on Broadway in the early 1940s.

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