June 29, 2014

The Maltese Falcon at Hopkins Center for the Arts, June 29

As part of their festival “Film Noir: Embrace the Dark”, the Dartmouth Film Society will present Peter Lorre’s first Warner Bros movie, The Maltese Falcon (1941), on Sunday, June 29, 2014.

The program will begin at 4 pm with an introduction by DFS Directorate Member Dennis Damon.

Admission is $8 for general admission, $5 for Dartmouth students with ID, and $5 for children 12 and under. A DFS movie pass is available for $35 for adults and $20 for Dartmouth students. Tickets may be purchased on-line through the Hopkins Center website. From the Maltese Falcon page, click the “Buy” link. Dartmouth students and Hopkins Center members will be asked to log-in for discounts.

The complete schedule for “Embrace the Dark” is available on the Hopkins Center website.

The film will be shown in the Loew Auditorium, in the Black Family Visual Arts Center on the Dartmouth campus. The Black Family Visual Arts Center is located at 16 Lebanon Street, in Hanover, New Hampshire.

Parking is available on the streets and in lots next to the Hopkins Center. Hanover’s Parking Garage is located at 7 Lebanon Street, across from the Hopkins Center’s Lebanon Street entrance. The garage is free all day on Sundays.

Directions to the Hopkins Center, as well as parking information, may be found on the Hopkins Center website.

In the pages of The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre, Stephen Youngkin discusses the making of The Maltese Falcon, including interviews with director John Huston. The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre is available in hardback and softbound editions, as well as the Nook and Kindle.

June 19, 2014

Happy Birthday, Peter Lorre! – From TCM and Sirius XM Radio

The Turner Classic Movies channel often honors the birthdays of many actors with a festival of their films, and this year, on Thursday, June 26 – the occasion of his 110th birthday – it’s Peter Lorre’s turn, with a morning and afternoon of eight Lorre movies.

The Lorre fest begins at 6:15 am, Eastern Standard Time, with Peter’s first sound movie, M (1931), and continues with Stranger on the Third Floor (1940), Background to Danger (1943), The Constant Nymph (1943), The Conspirators (1944), Passage to Marseille (1944), Hotel Berlin (1945), ending in the early evening with The Verdict (1946).

Here’s the full schedule:
  • 6:15 am – M
  • 8:15 am – Stranger on the Third Floor
  • 9:30 am – Background to Danger
  • 11 am – The Constant Nymph
  • 1 pm – The Conspirators
  • 2:45 pm – Passage to Marseille
  • 4:45 pm – Hotel Berlin
  • 6:30 pm – The Verdict
Unfortunately, not the biggest parts for Peter – or the longest screen-time – but for Lorre fans, it’s nice to celebrate Peter’s birthday with a TCM festival.

The party continues on Sirius XM satellite radio, with host Greg Bell’s annual "Love for Laszlo" salute to Peter’s birthday on the Radio Classics channel, Channel 82 on the XM dial.

For two hours, Lorre fans can enjoy four programs – two episodes of Peter’s own series Mystery in the Air, “The Mask of Medusa” (Sept. 4, 1947) and “The Queen of Spades” (Sept. 11, 1947); Suspense, "Of Maestro and Man" (July 20, 1944); and finally an episode of Jack Benny’s series The Lucky Strike Program, “I Stand Condemned” (Mar. 24, 1946).

The Lorre tribute will air over these dates and times:

Monday, June 23:
8 am Eastern, 3 am Pacific
10 pm Eastern, 7 pm Pacific

Thursday, June 26:
4 am Eastern, 1 am Pacific
8 pm Eastern, 5 pm Pacific

Saturday, June 28:
12 pm Eastern, 9 am Pacific

Satellite radio providers XM and Sirius air Radio Classics over channel 82. Subscribers may also listen to the programs over the internet. Log-in with your User ID and password. Not a subscriber? A free 30-day trial is also available through the XM radio website.

A full schedule of the week’s programming may be found on Greg Bell’s website.

In his book The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre (2005), Stephen D. Youngkin recounts the life and career of Peter Lorre through the recollections of family members, friends, directors, fellow actors, and crew on film, stage, radio, and television. Beginning his research in the early 1970s gave Youngkin access to two of Peter’s brothers, his first wife Celia Lovsky, his daughter Catherine, writer Billy Wilder, directors Alfred Hitchcock, Frank Capra, John Huston, actors Vincent Price, Harry Morgan, and so many others. These interviews shed light on Peter’s childhood, his early days in theater, his career on film, radio, and television, and his sad final days.

The appendix of The Lost One includes lists of Peter’s stage, film, radio, and television credits.

The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre is available in both hard-back and soft-bound, as well as the Kindle and Nook.

The Maltese Falcon at the Virginia Theatre, June 21

On Saturday, June 21, the Virginia Theatre, in Champaign, Illinois, will kick off its annual News-Gazette Film Series with The Maltese Falcon (1941), Peter Lorre’s first movie for the Warner Bros. studio.

The film will be shown at 1 pm and 7 pm.

At the 1 pm screening, filmgoers will be treated to organist David Schroeder performing on the Virginia Historic Wurlitzer Pipe Organ. Following the 7 pm screening, News-Gazette film critic will give a talk in the Mezzanine Lobby about The Maltese Falcon.

Admission is $6 for all seats. Tickets may be purchased at the box office during the hours of 10 am and 5:30 pm, Monday through Friday, or by calling the cinema at 217-356-9063. Telephone orders will be left at the Will-Call window. For a fee of $1.25, the tickets may also be mailed.

Tickets may also be purchased on-line through the Virginia Theatre website. Click the “Buy Now” button beside The Maltese Falcon. A processing fee of $1 will be added to any on-line order.

The complete schedule for the News-Gazette Film Series may be found on the Virginia Theatre website. A dollar of each ticket will go to the Virginia Theatre’s restoration fund.

The Virginia Theatre is located at 203 W. Park Avenue, in Champaign, Illinois.

Parking is available on the streets near the cinema.

June 14, 2014

Peter Lorre Event on Coney Island, June 14

On Saturday, June 14, 2014, the Phantom Creep Theatre, on Coney Island, will celebrate Peter Lorre with a double-feature film event, plus a live horror-filled stage show.

The event gets underway at 8 pm and includes showings of M (1931) and Peter’s Studio 57 episode, “Young Couples Only”, both in 16mm prints. The Mighty Moloch, Isadora Spivey, Ek the Ghoul, and more will also on-hand for the festivities.

The program will be presented at the Coney Island Museum. Popcorn is free.

Admission is $10 for all seats. Tickets may be purchased on-line through the Coney Island website, at no extra charge. Tickets may also be purchased at the door. Tickets purchased on-line will be marked “Will Call”.

The Coney Island Museum is located at 1208 Surf Avenue, in Brooklyn, New York.

Coney Island is well-served by public transportation, including trains and buses. Parking is available at meters along most streets. Commercial parking lots are located on West 17th Street at MCU Park, West 12th Street between Mermaid and Surf, West 15th Street between the Boardwalk and Surf, and on Neptune Avenue between West 12th and Stillwell Avenue. More information on public transportation may be found on the Coney Island website.

Lorre fans might want to make a note to return to Coney Island on Saturday, September 6, 2014 – when the Coney Island Film Society will present Quicksand (1950). The movie will begin at 8:30 pm, in the Coney Island Museum. Admission is $6 for everyone. Tickets may be purchased on-line, as well as at the door.

Studio 57 was one of the many anthology series airing on television throughout the 1950s. Broadcast over the DuMont network, Studio 57 was sponsored by Heinz 57. The copyright date of “Young Couples Only”, in which Peter played Mr. Grober, the janitor, is Sept. 3, 1955 – but for reasons unknown, the episode never aired.

Maybe the DuMont executives felt the idea of a janitor with a third eye in the back of his head would be too much for audiences to handle. Peter’s Alfred Hitchcock Presents episode “Man From the South” was originally scheduled to air on Jan. 3, 1960 – but postponed until March 13, 1960, because of its content. The story of a man who will have his little finger hacked off with a cleaver if his lighter fails to light 10 times in a row, it was decided, was hardly festive viewing during the Christmas and New Year’s holiday season . . . .

A full list of Peter’s film and television work, in addition to his stage and radio credits, are listed in the Appendix of The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre, by Stephen D. Youngkin. The Lost One is available in soft-bound and hard-back, as well as the Kindle and Nook.

June 12, 2014

Background to Danger at the AFI Silver in June

Peter Lorre fans in the Silver Spring, Maryland, area will have the opportunity to catch Background to Danger (1943) on the big screen this weekend at the AFI Silver Theatre.

The movie is included in the American Film Institute series Action! The Films of Raoul Walsh, Part 2, which began on April 27 and will run to Wednesday, July 2, 2014. The full schedule of movies, all directed by Walsh, may be found on the AFI website.

Background to Danger will be shown on the following dates and times:
  • Friday, June 13 – 3 pm
  • Monday, June 16 – 9:45 pm
  • Wednesday, June 18 – 7:20 pm
Tickets are $12 for general admission; $10 for seniors 65 years and older, students, and the military (with proper ID); and $7 for children 12 and under. For AFI members Two-Star level and higher, admission is $8.50. AFI Member Passes will be accepted for all movies in the Raoul Walsh series.

Tickets may be reserved on-line through the AFI Silver website. Click the “Buy Tickets” button, then scroll to the title Background to Danger, click the link and select a show date and time. Tickets reserved on-line must be claimed at the box office with the same credit card used to make the reservation. The AFI Silver accepts American Express, Visa, MasterCard, and Discover credit cards.

Tickets may also be purchased at the AFI Silver box office, which opens 30 minutes before the first film of the day.

The AFI Silver Theatre is located at 8633 Colesville Road, at the intersection of Colesville Road and Georgia Avenue, in Silver Spring, MD. Directions to the cinema may be found on the AFI Silver website.

Parking is available in several public parking decks close to the theater. Most convenient is the Wayne Avenue garage, located at 921 Wayne Avenue, Silver Spring, MD. Parking at the Wayne Avenue garage is free on weekends and after 8 pm on weekdays. More information on parking can be found on the AFI Silver website, under Parking.

In the pages of The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre, Stephen Youngkin chronicles the making of Background to Danger, including an interview with Harvey Parry, Peter’s stunt double from the days of the Mr. Moto series at 20th Century-Fox in the late 1930s. Parry described what really happened on the set when lead actor George Raft, who during the filming of one scene became fed up with Peter’s scene-stealing and punched the actor. Said Harvey Parry of Peter Lorre – “Peter was a little character and he knew exactly what he was doing when he was in a scene.”

The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre is available on the Kindle and Nook, as well as hard-back and soft-bound.

Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Plays the Music of Casablanca

Peter Lorre fans in the Baltimore and North Bethesda, Maryland, area will have an opportunity this weekend to watch Casablanca (1942) accompanied by a full orchestra, as part of their “Movie and Music” series.

On June 12 and 13, Thursday and Friday, the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra will perform the original film score, written by Warner Bros. composer Max Steiner, at the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall in Baltimore. On Saturday, June 14, the BSO will perform at the Music Center at Strathmore in North Bethesda. Emil de Cou will conduct the orchestra in both venues.

All performances will begin at 8 pm.

At the Meyerhoff, ticket prices vary from $39 to $94, depending on the section. At the Music Center, prices vary from $55 to $115, depending on section.

Tickets may be purchased on-line through the BSO website. Click on the “Buy Tickets” button. A service fee will be added to the price – $3 for BSO subscribers, $4 for non-subscribers.

The Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall is located at 1212 Cathedral Street, in Baltimore, Maryland.

The Music Center at Strathmore is located at 5301 Tuckerman Lane, in North Bethesda, Maryland.

Parking for the Meyerhoff is available at the Cathedral Parking Garage, located at the northeast corner of Preston and Cathedral streets, opposite the Meyerhoff. Enter from Cathedral Street. Parking is also available at the Symphony Center Parking Garage, located adjacent to the Meyerhoff. Enter from Park Avenue. More information about parking may be found on the Meyerhoff page on the BSO website.

For the Music Center at Strathmore, parking is available in the Grosvenor Strathmore Metro garage, located off Tuckerman Lane. More information about parking may be found on the Strathmore page on the BSO website.

The making of Casablanca is chronicled in the pages of The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre, by Stephen D. Youngkin. The Lost One is available for purchase in hard-back and soft-cover, as well as the Kindle and Nook.