January 12, 2018

Arsenic and Old Lace at Illinois Cinema

The Virginia Theatre, located in Champaign, Illinois, continues its News-Gazette Film Series with Arsenic and Old Lace (1944) on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018.

The film will be shown at 1 pm and 7 pm. Before the 7 pm show, the cinema’s organist David Schroeder will play the Wurlitzer Pipe Organ and lead the audience in a short sing-along, with the lyrics shown on historic glass slides projected onto the screen.

Tickets are $6 for all seats. Tickets may be purchased at the Virginia Theatre box-office. Tickets may also be purchased on-line through the venue’s website. A nominal processing fee of $1 will be added to each set of tickets purchased on-line.

The historic Virginia Theatre, opened in 1921, is located at 203 West Park Avenue, in the Champaign Park area of Champaign, Illinois.

Metered parking is available on the streets near the cinema. Parking is also available at the Hill Street Parking Deck, located at 125 at West Hill Street, in Champaign, Illinois. More information about parking is available on the venue’s website.

For more information, please call the Virginia Theatre at 217-356-9063.

January 5, 2018

Casablanca Included in Michael Curtiz Fest at UCLA

On Friday, Jan. 5, 2018, the UCLA Film and Television Archive, in association with the Hugh M. Hefner Classic American Film Program, will kick off a salute to director Michael Curtiz with a showing of one of his most famous movies, Casablanca (1942), on a double-bill with Kid Galahad (1937) in the Billy Wilder Theater.

Film noir expert Alan K. Rode will curate the series and introduce each film. Mr. Rode will also sign copies of his new book Michael Curtiz: A Life in Film (University Press of Kentucky, 2017) before and between each screening, with the exception of Saturday, Feb. 3, 2018.

The program begins at 6:30 pm with the book-signing. Casablanca will be shown at 7:30 pm, with Kid Galahad (1937) to follow.

The festival will run from Friday, Jan. 5 to Saturday, Mar. 17, 2018. The complete schedule is available on the UCLA Film and Television Archive website.

Tickets for the Casablanca / Kid Galahad double-feature are $9 general admission and $8 for non-UCLA students, seniors, and UCLA Alumni Association members. ID is required for students and Alumni Association members. Current UCLA students with ID are eligible for one free ticket to any Archive show.

General admission tickets may also be purchased on-line through the Festival website for $10 each. Tickets may be called for at the Billy Wilder Theater box office, which opens one hour before the first show.

The Billy Wilder Theater is located at the Courtyard Level of the Hammer Museum, 10899 Wilshire Boulevard, at the intersection of Wilshire and Westwood boulevards in the Westwood Village area of Los Angeles, California.

For more information, please call the theater at 310-206-8013.

Parking is available in the lot under the Billy Wilder Theater. Enter the lot from Westwood Boulevard, just north of Wilshire Boulevard. Parking for the disabled is provided on levels P1 and P3. On Saturdays and Sundays, the fee is a flat rate of $3.

The venue is also well-served by public transportation.

More information about parking and public transportation, as well as directions, may be found on the venue’s website.

Casablanca was the first of two movies in which Peter Lorre worked with Michael Curtiz. In the pages of The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre (University Press of Kentucky, 2005), Stephen Youngkin describes a story Peter told to a Humphrey Bogart biographer about the time Peter and Bogie “blackmailed” Michael Curtiz into a sense of humor.

The film was Passage to Marseille (1944), and the two pranksters began telling long stories – and if Curtiz did not laugh, they deliberate fluffed their lines. Peter reported it took the director a couple days to figure out that if he laughed, he got the scene in one take.

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

January 4, 2018

Conspirators at the Normal Theater

The historic Normal Theater, located in Normal, Illinois, turns the spotlight on actress Hedy Lamarr with the documentary Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story (2017), Ziegfeld Girl (1941), and the only movie in which she co-starred with Peter Lorre and Sydney Greenstreet – the Warner Bros. spy drama The Conspirators (1944).

The Conspirators will be shown at 7 pm on Thursday, Jan. 4, and Saturday, Jan. 6, 2018.

Ticket prices are $7 for general admission and $5 for children age 13 and under, as well as students. Tickets may be purchased at the Normal Theater box office, which opens 30 minutes before the start of the show. Tickets may also be purchased on-line through the venue’s website.

The Normal Theater is located at 209 W. North Street, in the Uptown Normal area of Normal, Illinois.

Parking is available at several lots and garages near the theater, as well as on the streets near the Normal. Most convenient is the parking garage located at 122 W. Beaufort Street. After 6 pm every night and all day Sunday, parking is free. More information about parking, as well as directions to the theater, is available on the cinema’s website.

For more information, please contact the Normal Theater at 309-454-9720.

The Conspirators was the sixth of nine movies Peter Lorre made with Sydney Greenstreet. Their working relationship is chronicled in Stephen Youngkin’s Book The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre (2005). Although they rarely socialized away from the studio, they had great respect for each other’s talents – and in addition to their nine movies, also appeared together several times on radio. A complete list of Peter’s radio credits is included in the book’s Appendix.

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