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Production Designer and Film Society co-chair THOMAS A. WALSH ADG will moderate a discussion following the screening with MARIA COOPER JANIS, Cedric Gibbon's great-niece and daughter of legendary actor Gary Cooper. They will explore the legacy of Gibbons' work and spotlight in the Golden Age of Hollywood socialites.
"Gibbons was clearly the most influential Supervising Art Director of Hollywood's Golden Age," said Walsh. "It was a time where the studio dream factories created a luxurious world of make-believe, a place where people dined on caviar, dressed in tuxedos and danced the night away on luxury liners. Lavish sets were the apertures through which audiences could glimpse for a few hours a life they otherwise only dreamed about."
Regarded by those who knew him best as the "Mercury of Hollywood," Gibbons was the design trendsetter, most responsible for bringing glamour and sophistication with a touch of surrealism to Depression-era audiences. His four-decade tenure as Supervising Art Director at MGM from 1924-1956 saw his stamp of approval on a record 1,500 films. Director Vincente Minnelli described Cedric Gibbons as "the grand cardinal of the art department." Dark and handsome, he was an arbiter of taste and fashion and his career was closely followed in the 1930s by gossip columnists, particularly when he was married to actress and socialite Dolores Del Rio. Capturing the essence of Hollywood glamour, his life was as celestial as the many film stars who frequented his weekend pool parties including Greta Garbo, Clark Gable and Johnny Weissmuller.
GRAND HOTEL, with its many stars, takes place at a luxurious Berlin hotel between the wars where the once-wealthy (John Barrymore) supports himself as a thief and gambler. In this lavish adaptation of the successful Broadway play, the baron romances one of his marks, the aging ballerina (Greta Garbo), and teams with dying accountant (Lionel Barrymore) against his former boss, crooked industrialist (Wallace Beery), and his ambitious stenographer, (Joan Crawford). Cedric Gibbons' stunning Art Deco art direction gives the players an opulent setting for their personal melodramas.
Accompanying Grand Hotel will be a short tribute film narrated by MARIA COOPER JANIS, consisting of archival photographs, footage, home movies, and many iconic film clips. This rags-to-riches story will take the viewer from Gibbons early days in Brooklyn as a troubled youth, to his early career at Edison Studios, his arrival in Hollywood, his fairy tale charmed existence and his experiences with the end of the studio system in the late fifties. This short will depict the range of Gibbons extraordinary work and his enduring contributions to design and Art Deco in cinema.
The Art Directors Guild Film Society 2018 Series includes:
- THE CONFORMIST (1970) - A CONVERSATION WITH PRODUCTION DESIGNER HANNAH BEACHLER ADG (Black Panther) on Sunday, May 20, 5:30 PM at the Egyptian Theatre
- THE PLANET OF THE APES (1968) - CELEBRATING THE 50th ANNIVERSARY: A TRIBUTE TO OSCAR-NOMINATED PRODUCTION DESIGNER WILLIAM J. CREBER ADG on Sunday, June 24, 5:30 PM at the Egyptian Theatre
- SPACE HUNTER: ADVENTURES IN THE FORBIDDEN ZONE - 3D (1983) - A TRIBUTE TO EMMY®-WINNING PRODUCTION DESIGNER JACKSON DE GOVIA ADG on Sunday, August 5 at the Egyptian Theatre
Representing the Art Directors Guild are Film Society Co-Chairs Thomas A. Walsh, John Muto ADG, Michael Allen Glover ADG, John Iacovelli ADG and Debbie Patton, ADG Director of Awards and Events. Working with them are the American Cinematheque's Gwen Deglise, Margot Gerber and Grant Moninger. General admission: $12. American Cinematheque members: $8. Students/Seniors with valid ID: $10. All screenings start at 5:30 PM; 24-hour information is available at 323-466-FILM (3456).
Established in 1937, the Art Directors Guild (IATSE Local 800) represents 2,500 members who work throughout the world in film, television and theater as Production Designers, Art Directors, Assistant Art Directors; Scenic, Title and Graphic Artists; Illustrators and Matte Artists; Set Designers, Model Makers and Previs Artists. The ADGs ongoing activities include a Film Society, an annual Awards Banquet, a creative/technology community (World Building Institute), a bimonthly craft magazine (Perspective); and extensive technology-training programs, figure drawing and other creative workshops and year-round Gallery 800 art exhibitions. The Guilds online directory and website resources are at www.adg.org. Connect with the Art Directors Guild on Facebook, Twitter and Insta
Established in 1981, the American Cinematheque is a 501 C 3 non-profit viewer-supported film exhibition and cultural organization dedicated to the celebration of the Moving Picture in all of its forms. At the Egyptian Theatre, the Cinematheque presents daily film and video programming which ranges from the classics of American and international cinema to new independent films and digital work. Exhibition of rare works, special and rare prints, etc., combined with fascinating post-screening discussions with the filmmakers who created the work, are a Cinematheque tradition that keep audiences coming back for once-in-a-lifetime cinema experiences. The American Cinematheque renovated and reopened (on Dec. 4, 1998) the historic 1922 Hollywood Egyptian Theatre. This includes a state-of-the-art 616-seat theatre housed within Sid Grauman's first grand movie palace on Hollywood Boulevard. The exotic courtyard is fully restored to its 1922 grandeur. The Egyptian was the home of the very first Hollywood movie premiere in 1922. In January 2005 the American Cinematheque expanded its programming to the 1940 Aero Theatre on Montana Avenue in Santa Monica. For more information about American Cinematheque, visit the website at http://www.
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