June 22, 2015

Happy Birthday, Peter Lorre!

Friday, June 26, 2015, is Peter Lorre’s 111th birthday, and the celebration begins on Sunday, June 21, as Radio Classics channel host Greg Bell salutes “Love for Lorre”, his annual birthday tribute to Peter.

For two hours, Lorre fans can enjoy four of Peter’s old-time radio performances – two episodes from Peter’s own 13-week summer series Mystery in the Air, “The Mask of Medusa” (Sept. 4, 1947) and “The Queen of Spades” (Sept. 11, 1947); an episode of the anthology series Suspense, “Of Maestro and Man” (July 20, 1944), and finally, a guest appearance on Jack Benny’s show The Lucky Strike Program, “I Stand Condemned” (Mar. 24, 1946).

The Lorre tribute will air these dates and times:

Sunday, June 21:
9 am Pacific, 12 noon Eastern

Wednesday, June 24:
3 am Pacific, 6 am Eastern

Friday, June 26:
7 pm Pacific, 10 pm Eastern

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.

The party continues on television where two cable TV channels will show Lorre movies on Friday, June 26.

On the Turner Classic Movies channel, the “Summer of Darkness” film noir festival continues with The Mask of Dimitrios (1944) at 8 pm, hosted by Eddie Muller, who presents the “Noir City” film festivals in various U.S. cities, including Los Angeles, Seattle, Chicago, and Washington, D.C.

The GetTV channel presents a Lorre triple feature – Beat the Devil (1954) at 7 pm; The Face Behind the Mask (1941) at 9:05 pm; and finally Island of Doomed Men (1940) at 10:40 pm.

The life and career of Peter Lorre is chronicled in the pages of The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre by Stephen D. Youngkin, who interviewed two of Peter’s brothers, his first wife Celia Lovsky, his sister-in-law through his second wife Karen Verne, his daughter Catherine Lorre, friends, fellow actors, and the directors, producers and crew who worked with him throughout his career.

The Appendix of The Lost One includes the most complete list available of Peter’s credits – radio, film, stage, and television.

The Lorre radio programs airing this week in honor of Peter’s birthday are available through many merchants, including Radio Showcase. Many of Peter’s movies, as well as some of his television appearances, are available on DVD.

Published in 2005 through University Press of Kentucky, The Lost One is available in hard-cover, soft-cover, Amazon’s Kindle, and Barnes and Noble’s Nook.

June 10, 2015

Summer Classic Film Fests Include Casablanca

Summer months bring festivals of classic movies to many historic movie theaters, and this year, Peter Lorre fans can enjoy Casablanca (1942) on the big screen.

Take a look at these!

Kentucky Theater; Lexington, Kentucky – Wednesday, June 10
Orpheum Theater; Memphis, Tennessee – Friday, June 12
Indianapolis Museum of Art; Indianapolis, Indiana – Friday, June 19

Kentucky Theater – Lexington, Kentucky

Opening in 1922, the landmark Kentucky Theater will present Casablanca as the “Classic of the Week” on Wednesday, June 10, 2015.

Show times are at 1:30 pm and 7:15 pm.

Before 6 pm, all tickets are $6. After 6 pm, tickets are $8 for general admission, $6 for children 13 and under, and $6 for seniors age 60 and over. Tickets may be purchased on-line through the Kentucky Theater website, as well as at the cinema’s box office.

The Kentucky Theater is located at 214 East Main Street, in Lexington, Kentucky. Directions, as well as parking information may be found on the theater’s website.

For more information, please contact the cinema at (859) 231-7924.

Orpheum Theater – Memphis, Tennessee

As part of their annual Summer Movie Series, the Orpheum Theater will present Casablanca on Friday, June 12, 2015. Now in its 4th year, the series is hosted the Orion Federal Credit Union, and will run from Thursday, June 4, to Friday, August 28. The full schedule is available on the cinema’s website.

Casablanca will begin at 7 pm. Doors at the Orpheum open at 6 pm, with on-stage trivia, drink specials, and pre-movie activities in the lobby before the show.

Tickets are $7 for adults and $5 for children 12 and under. Tickets may be purchased at the Orpheum box office or on-line through the cinema’s website for a nominal fee.

The Orpheum Theater is located at 203 South Main Street, in Memphis, Tennessee. Directions to the cinema, as well as information about parking, is available on the Orpheum’s website.

For more information, please contact the Orpheum at (901) 525-3000.

National Bank of Indianapolis – Indianapolis, Indiana

The National Bank of Indianapolis marks its 40th season of “Summer Nights Film Series” with a showing of Casablanca at the outdoor amphitheater at the Indianapolis Museum of Art on Friday, June 19. The series will run every Friday evening from June 5 to August 28.

The movie will begin at dusk, but come at 7 pm for the special pre-show fun, including Humphrey Bogart impressions and classic movie trivia.

Tickets are $12 for the public and $6 for members of the IMA. And IMA members who show their National Bank of Indianapolis ATM, Debit, or Credit Card may receive an additional $1 off admission.

Tickets may be purchased on-line through the IMA website. Tickets may also be reserved by calling the ticket line at (317) 955-2339.

The Indianapolis Museum of Art is located at 4000 Michigan Road, in Indianapolis, Indiana. Directions to the IMA, as well as parking information, is available on the IMA website.

In the pages of The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre, Stephen D. Youngkin recounts the making of Casablanca, from its beginnings as a stage play to classic movie. Working only two days, with a total of eight minutes on-screen, Peter Lorre did not consider Casablanca an important movie and said later he made more money playing the roulette wheel on the “Gambling Room” set than he did before the cameras.

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

June 3, 2015

Students! Free Film Noir Class Online

Every Friday in June, 2015, the Turner Classic Movies channel turns their Friday Night Spotlight on the world of film noir with “Summer of Darkness” – a series of noir movies hosted by Eddie Muller, who presents the “Noir City” film festivals in various U.S. cities, such as Los Angeles, Seattle, Chicago, and Washington D.C.

This year, in conjunction with TCM’s “Summer of Darkness”, Ball State University presents a free, flexible on-line course on the film noir genre through the Canvas Network.

The online class will begin on Monday, June 1, and run for nine weeks until Tuesday, August 4, 2015. Enrollment is open until Sunday, July 19, 2015.

The class will be taught by film noir expert Richard Edwards and includes a special video series “The Case of Film Noir”, podcasts, and other materials, as well as opportunities for social sharing. On Tuesday, August 4, the course will conclude with a live video conference with Richard Edwards and Eddie Muller. Class participants who complete all assignments will receive a customized certificate of completion.

The intent of the course is to deepen viewers’ “understanding of the film nor phenomenon – from the earliest noir precursors to recent experiments in neo-noir”, as well as to post their opinions online and test their knowledge of film with an international community of film noir fans.

A description of the class, including “Course Outcomes” and “Frequently Asked Questions”, is available on the Canvas Network website.

To enroll in the free class, click on the blue “Enroll” button, located on the webpage “TCM Presents Into the Darkness: Investigating Film Noir”.

Peter Lorre fans attending the annual “Noir City” film festivals are frequently treated to screenings of Three Strangers (1945), The Chase (1946), Black Angel (1947), among other Lorre films.

Peter’s Stranger on the Third Floor (1940) is considered the first true film noir.

TCM’s “Summer of Darkness” festival will kick off on Friday, June 5, with a showing of M (1931) at 6 am, Eastern Standard Time, and will continue with Stranger on the Third Floor (1940) at 11:30 am and The Maltese Falcon (1941) at 2:30 pm.

On Friday, June 26, Peter’s 111th birthday, “Summer of Darkness” continues with The Mask of Dimitrios (1944) at 8 pm.

Although no textbook has been selected for the class, an excellent choice would be The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre, for which author Stephen D. Youngkin interviewed many of the actors and directors who worked with Peter – Fritz Lang, John Huston, Jean Negulesco, Margaret Tallichet, Geraldine Fitzgerald, and Robert Cummings, among others.

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

See you in class!