The following is a guest post by Jenny Paxson of the Packard Campus.
Thursday, November 16 (7:30 p.m.)
Peter Pan (Paramount, 1924)
The first film adaptation of J.M. Barrie’s enormously successful 1902 stage play Peter Pan, or The Boy Who Wouldn’t Grow Up remains one of the silent era’s most successful fantasies, notable not only for Betty Bronson’s exquisitely stylized performance as Peter, but also for its elaborate settings and special effects. Directed by Herbert Brenon and featuring Mary Brian as Wendy and Anna May Wong as Tiger Lily, the film closely follows the plot of the original play, and even goes so far as to incorporate much of its original stage dialogue in the intertitles. Thought to be lost for decades, James Card, film restorer and curator of George Eastman House in Rochester, New York, discovered a well-preserved copy in a vault at the Eastman School of Music in the 1950s, and made a preservation of that source. Film historian David Pierce (and now Assistant Chief of the Library of Congress National Audio Visual Conservation Center) discovered an additional and hitherto unknown 16mm copy at the Disney Studios which had been made when the company acquired the rights to the property in 1938. A new restoration was undertaken by the George Eastman House combining the two sources in 1994. Peter Pan was added to the National Film Registry in 2000. London based musician Stephen Horne will provide live musical accompaniment for the film.
Friday, November 17 (7:30 p.m.)
The Scarlet Letter (MGM, 1927)
Lillian Gish stars in this adaptation of Nathaniel Hawthorne’s 1850 novel as Hester Prynne, who engages in an adulterous relationship with the Reverend Dimmesdale (Lars Hanson) in Puritan New England. Gish, one of the most respected and popular actresses of her time, managed to get the film made by winning over a number of women’s and church groups around the country who considered the subject matter of the book unacceptable for the movies. Her pristine reputation, combined with a tasteful script by the great Hollywood screenwriter Frances Marion, caused them to change their minds and give the project their blessing. Directed by Swedish actor and filmmaker Victor Seastrom (Sjöström), the film also stars Henry B. Walthall, Karl Dane, William H. Tooker and Marcelle Corday. London based musician Stephen Horne will provide live accompaniment for the film.
Saturday, November 18 (2 p.m.)
Fly Away Home (Columbia, 1996)
In this family drama inspired by a true story, 13-year-old Amy Alden (Anna Paquin), rescues a nest of goose eggs and raises the flock of orphaned Canada geese after they hatch. When a game warden explains that geese learn everything from their parents including migratory routes, and that the chicks have imprinted on Amy as their mother, she and her inventor father (Jeff Daniels) attempt to lead the gaggle by ultralight aircraft on a 500 mile migration to a bird sanctuary in North Carolina. Directed by Carroll Ballard, the film received an Oscar nomination for Caleb Deschanel for Best Cinematography. Fly Away Home won the 1997 Broadcast Film Critics Association Critics Choice Award as the Best Family Film.
For more information on our programs, please visit the website at: www.loc.gov/avconservation/theater/.