With so many incredible films released worldwide each year, it's difficult to keep track of them over time. Leonard Maltin's Maltinfest aims to shine a light on some of those films, or as he puts it, "the films that got away." Some of the films in the lineup include Tim Burton's Big Eyes, Bela Lugosi Meets a Brooklyn Gorilla, The Death of Superman Lives, and more, and Joe Dante and Josh Olson will also be on hand to record an episode of The Movies That Made Me podcast, with Maltin as their special guest.
"World-renowned film critic and historian Leonard Maltin has spent over 50 years writing about and championing movies. Now he wants to showcase some of “the films that got away.”
Every year, good films are made and released but somehow fly under the radar, never finding the recognition they deserve. Alice, Leonard and Jessie Maltin created MaltinFest to showcase and recognize these undiscovered gems. Each title has been hand-picked and every guest speaker—including critics, podcasters, and the filmmakers themselves—will enhance the audience’s enjoyment of the movies.
“We want people to enjoy these films the way they were meant to be seen—with a simpatico audience on a giant screen,” says Maltin. He and his family hope to build a community of movie lovers who will return year after year for that shared experience.
MaltinFest is thrilled to have Sid Grauman’s Egyptian Theatre to provide the perfect setting for this inaugural event. Its lobby and famous forecourt are ideal places for guests to mingle and compare notes on the films they’ve just seen, and discuss anticipation for upcoming screenings and Q&A's.
Additionally, with the help of student programs around Los Angeles, MaltinFest looks to inspire a new generation of film lovers in the epicenter of American film.
SING STREET (2016) is a musical charmer from John Carney, the Irish filmmaker who made ONCE. It’s the story of a young man who starts making music videos so he’ll have an excuse to talk to a beautiful girl (Lucy Boynton). This is the kind of movie that leaves you feeling better than you did walking into the theater. That makes it a perfect opening night choice. The screening will be introduced by comedian and film enthusiast Doug Benson following a live recording of his popular podcast “Doug Loves Movies.”
PLEASE GIVE (2010) is a sly social satire from writer-director Nicole Holofcener (Oscar-nominated this year for Can You Ever Forgive Me) starring Catherine Keener and Oliver Platt as New Yorkers who feel guilty about their successful business and don’t know what to do about it. I love Holofcener’s work and her keen observations about human nature. Add to that a killer supporting cast and you’ve got a great film.
BIG EYES (2014) The guys who wrote Ed Wood and The People vs. O.J. Strike again with another incredible true-life tale. Amy Adams plays Margaret Keane, the woman who got rich painting children with oversized eyes while her husband (Christoph Waltz) took all the credit. Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski waited eleven years for this labor-of-love to get made, and persuaded their producer Tim Burton to direct it. Scott and Larry will tell the story behind the story following our screening.
SONGCATCHER (2000) A Special Jury Prize winner for its outstanding ensemble at Sundance, this gem by writer-director Maggie Greenwald was orphaned by its distributor. That’s why you may not know this must-see original. Janet McTeer plays a musicologist who travels to Appalachia to collect and notate songs from the backwoods people she meets. Emmy Rossum, Aidan Quinn, Pat Carroll, and Jane Adams costar. Wait till you hear these songs!
CITIZEN RUTH (1996) Alexander Payne and Jim Taylor’s smashing debut feature crowned them kings of modern satire. Laura Dern gives a fearless performance as a homeless woman whose pregnancy ignites a tug-of-war between abortionists and pro-lifers. No one emerges unscathed in this pointed portrait of American ideals gone haywire.
EXPORTING RAYMOND (2010) Phil Rosenthal learns that truth is funnier than fiction when he travels to Russia to re-create his hit sitcom Everybody Loves Raymond with a Soviet cast. You couldn’t make this stuff up! Phil will be joining us, on hiatus from his Netflix series Somebody Feed Phil.
ABSOLUTE BEGINNERS (1986) Julien Temple-directed this highly stylized musical set in 1958 London. with dazzling camerawork and memorable moments with David Bowie and Sade. It captures the flavor of a particular time and place in a unique fashion.
BELA LUGOSI MEETS A BROOKLYN GORILLA (1952) Meet the poor man’s Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis—Duke Mitchell and Sammy Petrillo—who encounter the one and only Lugosi and a lusty gorilla when they’re stranded on a jungle island. This Poverty Row quickie must be seen to be believed.
THE DEATH OF ‘SUPERMAN LIVES’ (2015) If only Kevin Smith’s screenplay had made it to the screen with Nicolas Cage playing the Man of Steel! How this comic book movie that might have been got sidetracked is the subject of the late Jon Schnepp’s loving and thorough documentary...with on-camera appearances by all the principals involved. Holly K. Payne will present the film she produced with her life partner, honoring his dedication to the fan community.
Each film will be accompanied by a classic cartoon or short subject. We’ve worked with The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, UCLA Film and Television Archive, Paramount Pictures, and Warner Bros. To bring our audience high-quality prints of these vintage gems.
Doug Benson’s “Doug Loves Movies” will kick off the festival on Friday night with panelists Samm Levine, Amy Miller, and Leonard Maltin.
Joe Dante and Josh Olson will interview Leonard for an episode of their show “The Movies That Made Me.”
Start Mother’s Day off right by buying her a personally signed copy of a recently published movie book. Authors will include Alicia Malone, Chris Nichols, George Geary, Jon Burlingame, Kliph Nesteroff, Tracey Goessel, Robert Bader, and Don Hahn. We’re happy to be working with Larry Edmunds Bookshop, a Hollywood institution in its own right.
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