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John Landis to Join Lin-Manuel Miranda at United Palace Screening of KING KONG, 4/27

Related: John Landis, KING KONG, United Palace Theatre
John Landis to Join Lin-Manuel Miranda at United Palace Screening of KING KONG, 4/27

Legendary filmmaker John Landis will introduce a free screening of the 1933 classic KING KONG as part of the "Sunday Movies at the United Palace with Lin-Manuel Miranda" series on April 27, 2014.

The series features classic New York City films every month and is part of the theatre's fundraising campaign to replace the 50-foot screen that has been in place since the 1950s.

Doors open at 4:00. Stage show and Q&A begins at 5:00. Screening at 5:30. It all takes placea at the historic United Palace, 4140 Broadway at 175th Street in Washington Heights, a historic movie palace that opened in 1930 with well-preserved Art Deco and Oriental architecture. The theatre is one block east of the 175th Street A-train station.

Acclaimed filmmaker Landis (ANIMAL HOUSE, BLUES BROTHERS, AN AMERICAN WEREWOLF IN LONDON, TRADING PLACES, THREE AMIGOS!, COMING TO AMERICA and MICHAEL JACKSON'S THRILLER) will provide his expert insight into the making of KING KONG during an Q&A led by Tony and Grammy Award-winning performer/writer Lin-Manuel Miranda (IN THE HEIGHTS). The Palace Youth Drum Ensemble will perform, welcoming guests to the Palace.

In 2013, the nonprofit arts and cultural center United Palace of Cultural Arts (UPCA) led a crowdsourcing campaign to "Return Film to the Palace" that raised nearly $50,000 in 40 days to start showing movies at the historic United Palace for The First Time since 1969.

The "Sunday Movies at the Palace with Lin-Manuel Miranda" series was conceived after the 5-year anniversary concert of "In the Heights" nearly sold out the Palace in 2013. Miranda met with UPCA Executive Director Mike Fitelson to discuss future plans and said his dream was to present iconic New York films in his community, where the last movie theatre closed in 2011. Each screening is preceded by live music, performance, and guest speakers that connect the audience more deeply to the movie.

Since January the series has included THE MUPPETS TAKE MANHATTAN, WEST SIDE STORY, and GHOSTBUSTERS. Miranda's guests have included actor/producer Lonny Price; stage, screen, and TV star Rita Moreno; and actor David Margulies, who played Mayor Lenny in GHOSTBUSTERS. The series has been a hit with audiences from both Washington Heights and the New York metro area, attracting as many as 1,200 guests to a single screening.

KING KONG was directed and produced by Merian C. Cooper and Ernest B. Schoedsack and features a giant stop-motion ape who falls in love with a beautiful actress played by

Fay Wray. It has been called "one of the most iconic movies in the history of cinema." It is 100 minutes long and will be shown in English with Spanish subtitles.

John Landis has lived a life in the movies since starting off in the mail room of 20th Century-Fox. His first film was SCHLOCK (1973) which, notably, was a tribute to classic monster movies. He wore a gorilla suit to portray the lead character, "Schlockthropus." In the late 1970s and early 1980s he directed what became some of the most popular comedies of all time: ANIMAL HOUSE (1978), THE BLUES BROTHERS (1980), TRADING PLACES (1983), and COMING TO AMERICA (1988). Despite his success with comedies, Landis always had a soft spot for monster movies. Landis wrote and directed AN AMERICAN WEREWOLF IN LONDON (1981) that became a cult movie classic in part for deftly marrying elements of The Comedy and horror genres. Its groundbreaking special effects won the Oscar for Outstanding Achievement in Makeup. Landis scored additional successes by pushing the boundaries of special effects while directing two videos for Michael Jackson: THRILLER (1983) and eight years later BLACK OR WHITE (1991), which helped popularize the use of digital morphing. In recent years Landis has continued to direct feature films, commercials, and TV shows, lectured at universities across the nation as a filmmaker/scholar under the auspices of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences, and published MONSTERS IN THE MOVIES (2011). Landis has said that KING KONG "is an almost perfect movie." He is married to Deborah Nadoolman, an Oscar-nominated costume designer, who grew up in Washington Heights.

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