The following is a guest post by Jenny Paxson of the Packard Campus.
Thursday, March 30 (7:30 p.m.)
Pay it Forward (Warner Bros., 2000)
Emmy Award-winning director and producer (for E.R.) Mimi Leder helmed this drama based on the novel of the same name by Catherine Ryan Hyde. When given a class assignment to “make the world a better place,” 11-year-old Trevor (Haley Joel Osment), comes up with a plan based on networking good deeds which he calls “pay it forward”–the recipient of a favor does a favor for three others rather than paying the favor back. Helen Hunt appears as Trevor’s alcoholic single mother with Kevin Spacey as his physically and emotionally scarred social studies teacher Eugene Simonet. Also starring Jay Mohr, Jim Caviezel, Jon Bon Jovi and Angie Dickinson.
Friday, March 31 (7:30 p.m.)
Thelma & Louise (MGM, 1991, R-rated *)
Screenwriter Callie Khouri began her script for Thelma & Louise with a single sentence premise: “Two women go on a crime spree.” What emerged from her word processor and eventually from the screen became a feminist manifesto and a cultural flashpoint which eventually landed the film’s stars, in character, onto the cover of Time magazine. Directed by Ridley Scott and anchored by two powerhouse and career-defining performances from Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis (and an early breakout appearance by Brad Pitt), Thelma & Louise skillfully contrasts exceedingly well-done action movie tropes with a non-didactic social commentary before building to an unforgettable climax. Along the way, it also manages to be funny, insightful and even eloquent in its rage. Since its release, Thelma & Louise has become both a symbol and a sort of short-hand for post-second wave feminism. The film was added to the National Film Registry on December 14, 2016. * No one under the age of 17 will be admitted without a parent or guardian.
Saturday, April 1 (7:30 p.m.)
Open the Door Richard… Richard Pryor’s Complete Appearances on the Ed Sullivan Show
The Pride of Peoria, Illinois, Richard Pryor, is considered perhaps the greatest stand-up comedian of all time. While Pryor was an untamed force of nature in the 1970’s, his early years as a fledgling comic are lesser known and even lesser seen. While Ed Sullivan, the King of Sunday Night, initially dismissed Pryor, a mutual friend, veteran comedian Alan King, strongly recommended him. Pryor soon charmed Sullivan and appeared 14 times on his show between 1965 and 1970. A master at characterizations, here we see the very early comedian trying on his many faces: the Samurai warrior, children in a Rumpelstiltskin play, the Signifier, the Weightlifter. As the 1960’s progress, before our eyes, we witness Pryor’s transformation into the more radical street spokesman that was to emerge. We are pleased to present all 14 appearances of Richard Pryor on The Ed Sullivan Show, perhaps for the first time. The program will be introduced by Dan Blazek, Packard Campus Recorded Sound Technician, who has given presentations about Richard Pryor at two ARSC (Association for Recorded Sound Collections) conferences in the past year.
For more information on our programs, please visit the website at: www.loc.gov/avconservation/theater/.