Summer of Silents to Unspool at the Academy

Beverly Hills, CA (May 23, 2011) - The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will kick off its summer screening series, "Summer of Silents: Photoplay Award Winners of the Silent Era," on Monday, June 13, with a big-screen presentation of "Humoresque" (1920) with live musical accompaniment.  The eight-film series, which will run through August 8, will showcase silent films of the 1920s, all of which were Photoplay Magazine Medal of Honor award winners.  All screenings will be held on Monday evenings at 7:30 p.m. at the Academy's Samuel Goldwyn Theater.  Pre-show festivities will begin at 7 p.m.

The Photoplay Magazine Medal of Honor was the first significant annual film award, pre-dating the establishment of the Oscars®.  First awarded in 1920, it was voted by the readers of Photoplay Magazine and given to the producer of the year's winning film.

The evenings also will feature live musical accompaniment as well as pre-show presentations of such rarities as surviving fragments of lost films of the era and comedy shorts starring Buster Keaton, Charlie Chaplin, Laurel and Hardy, and other greats.  Each film will be introduced by a notable film historian. 

Additionally, on Wednesday, July 20, Buster Keaton’s “The General” (1927) will be screened.  Though not a Photoplay award winner, the comedy is a classic of the silent era.

The complete schedule for "Summer of Silents" is as follows:

June 13                "Humoresque”
“One Week” (1920), starring Buster Keaton, will be presented during the pre-show.  The feature will be introduced by Cari Beauchamp, with live musical accompaniment composed by Michael Mortilla, and performed by Mortilla on piano and Nicole Garcia on violin.

June 20                "Tol’able David" (1921)
“Never Weaken” (1921), starring Harold Lloyd, will be presented during the pre-show.  The feature will be introduced by David Shepard, with live musical accompaniment composed and performed on piano by Alexander Rannie.

June 27               "Robin Hood" (1922)
“Pay Day” (1922), starring Charlie Chaplin, will be presented during the pre-show.  The feature will be introduced by Jeffrey Vance, with live musical accompaniment performed by Clark Wilson on an Allen Theatre Organ.

July 11                 "The Covered Wagon" (1923)
Surviving fragments from 1924 Photoplay award winner “Abraham Lincoln” and 3D images from “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” (1923) will be presented during the pre-show.  Live musical accompaniment provided by Will Ryan and the Cactus County Cowboys.

July 18                 "The Big Parade" (1925)
Introduced by film historian and Academy Honorary Award recipient Kevin Brownlow, with a recorded stereo orchestral score composed by Carl Davis.

BONUS SCREENING:
July 20                 “The General” (1927)
“Then and Now,” a photographic comparison tour by John Bengtson, outlining the filming locations for silent era comedies by Chaplin, Keaton and Lloyd will be presented during the pre-show.  The feature will be introduced by Brownlow with a recorded stereo orchestral score composed by Carl Davis.

July 25                 "Beau Geste" (1926)
“Saturday Afternoon” (1926), starring Harry Langdon, will be presented during the pre-show.  The feature will be introduced by Frank Thompson with live musical accompaniment by the Mont Alto Motion Picture Orchestra.

August 1              "7th Heaven” (1927)
“Mighty Like a Moose” (1926), starring Charley Chase, and a surviving fragment from the 1928 lost film, “The Patriot,” will be presented during the pre-show.  Introduced by Janet Bergstrom with live musical accompaniment composed and performed by Michael Mortilla on piano, Nicole Garcia on violin and Frank Macchia on winds.

August 8              "Four Sons” (1928)
“Two Tars” (1928), starring Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy, and a fragment from the 1928 lost film “The Case of Lena Smith” will be presented during the pre-show.

There will be no screening on July 4.  An updated list of speakers, music performers and other program details will be available on oscars.org.

Series passes for "Summer of Silents" will be on sale June 1.  Passes are $25 for the general public and $20 for Academy members and students with valid ID.  Passes include admission to the July 20 screening of “The General.”

Tickets to individual evenings, if still available, will go on sale Wednesday, June 1.  Tickets are $5 for the general public and $3 for Academy members and students with valid ID.  They may be purchased online at www.oscars.org, by mail, in person at the Academy during regular business hours or, depending on availability, on the night of the screening when the doors open at 6:30 p.m.  The Samuel Goldwyn Theater is located at 8949 Wilshire Boulevard in Beverly Hills.  For more information, call (310) 247-3600 or visit www.oscars.org.

Contact Information

For more information, contact

Tarrah Lee Curtis
tcurtis@oscars.org