News Column

El Paso's Plaza Classic Film Festival adds to lineup

June 16, 2013

YellowBrix

June 16--The 90th anniversary of Warner Bros. Pictures, Bugs Bunny's 75th anniversary, big musicals, silent classics and a tribute to Roger Ebert are planned for this year's Plaza Classic Film Festival.

The sixth annual edition of the El Paso Community Foundation's festival will be Aug. 1-11 in and around the Plaza Theatre.

All the usual elements will return, including more than 40 movies on the Plaza Theatre's big screen, outdoor movies and concerts, family movies in the Philanthropy Theatre, locally made movies and an art exhibit.

Several Warner Bros. titles will be among the more than 80 films shown this year, including Errol Flynn's "The Adventures of Robin Hood," Clint Eastwood's "Dirty Harry," Stanley Kubrick's "Barry

Lyndon" and Martin Scorsese's "Goodfellas."

The festival will also include several Bugs Bunny cartoons and "Looney Tunes" shorts directed by Chuck Jones, said Charles Horak, the festival's artistic director.

"The Sound of Music" and "West Side Story" are among the musicals on the schedule, along with the biblical epic "Ben-Hur," the restored 1924 silent film "The Thief of Bagdad" (accompanied by organist Walt Strony) and 1927's "Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans" (accompanied by Austin band My Education).

"Everlasting Ebert" is a tribute to the film critic, who died April 4. The series will feature several of the Chicago Sun-Times and "At the Movies" critic's favorite films, including Federico Fellini's "La Dolce Vita" and

Werner Herzog's "Fitzcarraldo."

"It's one way of remembering him," Horak said. "I like the idea of sitting in the theater watching a film and maybe trying to watch it through his eyes."

Previously announced titles include "Close Encounters of the Third Kind," "Meet Me in St. Louis" and "The Rocky Horror Picture Show."

An exhibition of storyboards, sketches and other images from movies such as "Gone With the Wind," the Marfa-made "Giant" and "The War of the Worlds" (which will be shown during the festival) will run July 28-Sept. 28 at the El Paso Museum of Art.

Horak said special guests should be announced within a few weeks. Past festivals have featured Al Pacino, El Paso native Debbie Reynolds, Tippi Hedren, Eva Marie Saint and Michael York.

Individual tickets will go on sale in early July. Festival passes cost $200 and are on sale now. Memberships in the festival's second-year Plaza Classic Film Club, open to high school students ages 14-18, cost $100.

They are available from the El Paso Community Foundation at 533-4020 or online at plazaclassic.com.

Doug Pullen may be reached at dpullen@elpasotimes.com; 546-6397. Read Pullen My Blog at elpasotimes.com/blogs. Follow him on Twitter @dougpullen and on Facebook at facebook.com/dougpulleneptimes.

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(c)2013 the El Paso Times (El Paso, Texas)

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