June 26, 2011

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

Radio Classics, channel 82 on the satellite radio providers XM and Sirius, will present a birthday tribute to Peter this week, born June 26, 1904.

For two hours, Lorre fans can enjoy Inner Sanctum, "The Black Seagull" (Mar. 7, 1943); Suspense, "Of Maestro and Man" (July 20, 1944), and two episodes of Peter’s own radio series Mystery in the Air, "The Lodger" (Aug. 14, 1947) and "The Horla" (Aug. 21, 1947).

An interview with Roger Corman will precede the four radio shows. Corman directed Peter in two Edgar Allan Poe films in the early 1960s, Tales of Terror (1962) and The Raven (1963), which co-starred Vincent Price.

The Lorre tribute will air these dates and times:

Sunday, June 26:
1 am Pacific, 4 am Eastern
1 pm Pacific, 4 pm Eastern

Wednesday, June 29:
3 am Pacific, 6 am Eastern
11 am Pacific, 2 pm Eastern

Saturday, July 2:
5 pm Pacific, 8 pm Eastern

XM and Sirius radio 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 life and career of Peter Lorre is chronicled in the pages of his authorized biography The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre by Stephen D. Youngkin, who interviewed many of Peter’s family members, friends, fellow actors, and the directors, producers and crew who worked with him during his career.

The Lorre radio programs airing this week in honor of Peter’s 107th birthday are available through many merchants, including Radio Showcase. The Appendix of The Lost One lists Peter’s many radio credits – in addition to his appearances on stage, in movies, and on television.

Published in 2005 through University Press of Kentucky, The Lost One is now available on Amazon’s Kindle and Barnes & Noble’s Nook.

June 25, 2011

Casablanca On-Screen in New Orleans, Tampa Summer Film Festivals

Summer means classic film festivals, and Casablanca (1942) is on the schedule in two historic cinemas this summer – the Prytania in New Orleans and the Tampa Theatre in Tampa, Florida.

Celebrate Peter Lorre’s birthday this weekend at the Prytania Theatre in New Orleans, where Casablanca (1942) will be shown Saturday, Sunday, and Wednesday, June 25, 26, and 29. Curtains go up at 11:45 a.m. with a pre-show program. The main feature begins promptly at noon.

Ticket prices for the classic film festival are $8.50 for adults and $6.50 for seniors over 62 and children under 12. Tickets may be purchased at the box-office or on-line through Yahoo, linked with the Prytania’s website. For more information, please call (504) 891-2787.

Built in 1915 and the only one-screen cinema left in New Orleans, the Prytania Theatre is located uptown at 5339 Prytania Street. Parking is available on the street near the cinema.

The Tampa Theatre is the venue for Casablanca on July 9 and 10, Saturday and Sunday, as part of that cinema’s popular Summer Classics series.

The doors open at 2 pm, at which time interested moviegoers may join a volunteer “Tampa Theatreologist” for a free guided mini-tour of the historic theater. (The theater’s regular “Backstage to Balcony” guided tour is scheduled for Saturday, June 25 and July 9, 11:30 am to 1 pm. Tickets for this tour are $5 for visitors 13 and older, $2 for children 2 to 12 years, and free for kids under 2 and Tampa Theatre members.)

A 20-minute musical program of popular tunes on the cinema’s restored Wurlitzer Theatre Organ will begin at approximately 2:40, followed by Looney Tunes cartoons and the movie at 3 pm.

And following selected movies this summer, moviegoers may stay for the “Post Film Talks”, presented by Professors Harriet Deer and Michael Foley. After Casablanca on Sunday, July 10, Professor Deer will discuss the movie’s cast, production, themes, and cultural significance.

Ticket prices for Casablanca and other Summer Classic films are $9 for all ages and $7 for Tampa Theatre members. Tickets may be purchased at the box-office. For more information, please call (813) 274-8981.

The Tampa Theatre is located at 711 Franklin Street. Parking is available on-street and close to the cinema.

The background and making of Casablanca is discussed in the authorized Lorre biography The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre, by Stephen D. Youngkin. Peter almost didn’t make it to Casablanca, being under contract to Universal Studios for Invisible Agent. Over his four days on-set – May 28-29 (Thursday and Friday) and June 1-2 (Monday and Tuesday), 1942 – Peter claimed he made more money at the set’s roulette wheel than he did working before the cameras.

The Lost One is now available in electronic format on the Kindle and the Nook.

June 11, 2011

The Maltese Falcon at the Lincoln This Weekend

The historic Lincoln Theatre in Massillon, Ohio, will present The Maltese Falcon (1941) this weekend, June 10, 11 and 12, 2011.

Show times are 7 pm on Friday and Saturday, and 6 pm on Sunday.

Admission is $3.

The Lincoln Theatre is located at 156 Lincoln Way East, in Massillon, Ohio. Originally built in 1915 as a silent movie theater, the Lincoln was saved from the wrecking ball in 1982 by the local Lions Club, who now act as volunteers during the weekly showings of classic films.

The Lincoln is also the home of the annual Fall Cinesation, a film convention featuring silent (with live accompaniment) and sound movies through the 1940s, many from restored archival prints. This year, the festival will be held on Sept. 22 to 25, 2011.

The Maltese Falcon was the first film Peter Lorre made with Humphrey Bogart and led to a lifelong friendship between the two actors, who would go on to make three more movies at Warner Bros: All Through the Night (1942), Casablanca (1942), and Passage to Marseille (1944). Their final film together came in Italy in 1954 – Beat the Devil.

Peter and Bogie’s friendship, both on- and off-screen, is detailed in the pages of The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre (2005) by Stephen D. Youngkin, who interviewed many of the people who knew and worked with the actors – including John Huston, who directed both The Maltese Falcon and Beat the Devil.

Photos of Lorre and Bogart, as well as posters and lobby cards from their movies, can be found on the official website of The Lost One. DVDs of their work may be found in the site's DVD section.

June 9, 2011

Casablanca at Dickinson College, Carlisle, PA

Beginning Friday, June 10, Casablanca (1942) is one of three films to be shown outdoors at Dickinson College in Carlisle, PA, this summer. The Trout Gallery, located on campus on the first floor of the Weiss Center for the Arts, will host the film program in association with a special Gallery exhibit – “Image! Text! Action! Posters and Newsreels from the American Home Front: 1941-1945”.

Admission to the films and the exhibit is free.

Casablanca will be shown on an outdoor screen, set up on the lawn beside the Weiss Center, located at N. College Street and West High Street in Carlisle, PA. Lawn chairs and blankets – and picnic dinners! – are welcome. The movie will begin at dusk, approximately 9 pm. In case of rain, the film will be shown indoors in the Weiss Center, room 235.

The Trout Gallery’s regular hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 10 am to 4 pm, but for these showings, the Gallery will open at 7 pm. Visit the Trout Gallery before the movie and receive a voucher for free popcorn!

Dickinson College is located at 20 South College Street, in Carlisle, PA. Parking is available on the street and in the campus lots.

Parking for the film festival is available beside the Weiss Center, in the lot off Church Avenue.

For more information, call (717) 245-1711.

Running from June 3 to Aug. 13, 2011, the gallery exhibit “Image! Text! Action! Posters and Newsreels from the American Homefront: 1941-1945” illustrates the development of new printing technologies and popular cinema and the way they compelled U.S. citizens to support the war effort. The works in the exhibit are part of a larger gift of World War II posters given to the Trout Gallery by Robert and Francisca Kan.

More information about the exhibit and film festival can be found on the Trout Gallery website.

Peter Lorre, who considered Casablanca unimportant, claimed he made more money playing the “Café American” set’s roulette wheel between takes than he did actually working on the film. This and more reminiscences by cast and crew, plus background on the making of Casablanca, are described in the Warner Brothers chapter of The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre, by Stephen D. Youngkin.

June 8, 2011

Arsenic and Old Lace in Gettysburg, June 8, 2011

The historic Majestic Theater in downtown Gettysburg kicks off its fifth summer of classic movies with a showing of Arsenic and Old Lace (1944) on Wednesday, June 8, 2011.

The show begins at 7:30 pm. Admission is $6 for all seats.

Ticket packages for the classic film season are also available. The Deluxe Offer includes 10 movies for $60, with 3 free movies. The Special Offer includes 6 movies for $36, with 1 free movie.

The complete list of films this summer can be found in the Calendar section of the theater's website.

The Majestic Theater is located at 25 Carlisle Street in Gettysburg, PA. Metered parking is available on the street in front of the theater, with a parking garage located in Race Horse Alley, directly behind the theater.

For more information, please call (717) 337-8200.

In The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre (University Press of Kentucky, 2005), Stephen Youngkin details the making of Arsenic and Old Lace, with personal reminiscences of cast members Peter Lorre and Cary Grant by the director Frank Capra. The official website for The Lost One includes behind-the-scenes photos – including Peter’s personal copy of a photo of the entire cast standing amongst the tombstones of the graveyard set.

Next week’s film: Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) – with a Nazi villain whose resemblance to Lorre is not by accident. Ronald Lacey was cast in the role specifically because he reminded Raiders director Steven Spielberg of Peter Lorre. Catch it at 7:30 pm on Wednesday, June 15, 2011.

June 5, 2011

Lorre Films This Summer

A summer of Peter Lorre films on TV begins with a showing of Arsenic and Old Lace on Turner Classic Movies – Sunday, June 5, 1:45 pm EST.

And then continues on with many Lorre films through July and August.

Peter Lorre's page on the TV Guide Channel website lists the Lorre films scheduled on various television channels over a 2-week period.

June, 2011

June 5 (Sun.), 1:45 pm, Turner Classic Movies channel – Arsenic and Old Lace (1944)

June 11 (Sat.), 9:30 am, Fox Movie Channel – I Was an Adventuress (1940)

June 15 (Wed.), 9 am, Hallmark Movie Channel – 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea (1954)

June 20 (Mon.), 5:15 am, Action Cinemax – Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea (1961)

July, 2011

July 2 (Sat.), 5:15 am, More Max – Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea (1961).

July 4 (Mon.), 4:10 pm, MGM Movie Channel – Muscle Beach Party (1964).

July 6 (Wed.), 3 am, TCM – Three Strangers (1946). A rare romantic role for Peter. His leading lady, Joan Lorring, also played his love interest in The Verdict (1946).

July 7 (Thurs.), 8:35 am, Flix East – The Patsy (1964).

July 8 (Fri.), 12 midnight, THIS channel – Black Angel (1946).

July 10 (Sun.), 6 pm, TCM – Casablanca (1942).

July 11 (Mon.), 6:45 am, Flix East – The Patsy (1964).

July 14 (Thurs.), 1:30 pm, THIS channel – The Comedy of Terrors (1964).

July 14 (Thurs.), 2:30 am, TCM – The Sad Sack (1957). An entry in TCM’s month-long look at Arab Images on Film, this Jerry Lewis starrer with Peter Lorre as Sergeant Abdul ends an evening of “Arabs as a Subject of Ridicule”.

July 19 (Tues.), 6 am, Flix East – The Patsy (1964).

July 24 (Sun.), 7:30 am, Fox Movie Channel – I Was an Adventuress (1940)

July 27 (Wed.), 4:30 pm, Flix East – The Patsy (1964).

August, 2011
TCM presents their annual Summer Under the Stars – No special day for Peter Lorre, but several days for Lorre co-stars.

Aug. 10 (Wed.), 4:15 pm, TCM – Around the World in 80 Days (1956). Shirley MacLaine Day – As a Japanese steward on a ship bound for Yokohama, Peter Lorre joined dozens of Hollywood actors in this all-star extravaganza filmed around the world. He also appeared in the animated closing credits – as a sword-wielding samurai warrior.

Aug. 17 (Wed.), 8 pm, TCM – The Maltese Falcon (1941). Humphrey Bogart Day, featuring the first film Peter made with his long-time buddy.

Aug. 17 (Wed.), 12 midnight, TCM – Beat the Devil (1954). Humphrey Bogart Day continues with the final film Peter and Bogie made together.

Aug. 23 (Tues.), 9:30 am, TCM – All Through the Night (1942). Conrad Veidt Day features the second film Lorre made with Bogart.

Aug. 23 (Tues.), 12 midnight, TCM – Casablanca (1942): Conrad Veidt Day ends with another Lorre and Bogart film.

These films and many other Lorre movies are now available on DVD and VHS – some remastered and packaged with extra features. For more information on the films of Peter Lorre released to home video, head to the DVD — VHS section of The Lost One website.

Happy viewing!