Samuel Goldwyn Theater
8949 Wilshire Boulevard
Beverly Hills, CA, 90211
Directed by William Friedkin. Produced by William Peter Blatty. Screenplay by Blatty, based on his novel.
Cast: Ellen Burstyn, Max von Sydow, Lee J. Cobb, Kitty Winn, Jack MacGowran, Jason Miller, Linda Blair.
132 minutes. DCP. Courtesy of Warner Bros.
In honor of the film’s 45th anniversary, the Academy hosted a celebratory screening of the director’s cut, featuring an onstage discussion with director William Friedkin and actress Ellen Burstyn.
Terrifying audiences since 1973, The Exorcist follows the demonic possession of 12-year-old Regan MacNeil, and her mother Chris’s fight to save her in the ultimate struggle of good versus evil. As Regan’s behavior becomes more extreme, Chris seeks help from two priests who realize that the only way to help Regan is to perform an exorcism. The Exorcist was nominated for 10 Academy Awards, including Best Actress for Ellen Burstyn and Directing for William Friedkin, and won Oscars for Sound and Adapted Screenplay. While controversial at the time of its release, The Exorcist went on to become the first horror film to be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Picture.