Silent Film Versions of The Wizard of Oz, Peter Pan and Alice In Wonderland · Screened Under The Stars
Saturdays, July 20 and 27, and August 3, Heritage Square Museum will screen silent film adaptations off children literary classics during its 2013 Silent and Classic Movie Nights series. These early films showcase the spirit of the original source material with action, adventure and very rudimentary special effects for its day. This year’s film series is perfect for the whole family to enjoy and will feature a cartoon before each movie.
On Saturday, July 20, the museum will screen the 1924 version of Peter Pan starring silent film stars Betty Bronson as Peter Pan, Ernest Torrence as Captain Hook, Mary Brian as Wendy, and Virginia Browne Faire as Tinker Bell. The film, released by Paramount Pictures and directed by Herbert Brenon, was the first film adaptation of the play by J. M. Barrie.
The 1915 film version of Alice In Wonderland will be screened on Saturday, July 27. This is the third film adaption of the Lewis Carroll classic novel. For admirers of the book, this film version is significant for portraying the ‘Father William’ poem in its entirety and it includes an image of John Tenniel’
s illustration of Father William doing his back-somersault at the front door. Tenniel was the artist who illustrated Carroll’ s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass.
The last feature film will be screened on Saturday, August 3 and it is the 1925 version of The Wizard of Oz. This silent film version is not only a major departure from the book but also the 1939 Judy Garland film. The main plot difference is that the Scarecrow, Tin Man, and Lion are not actually characters, but are in fact disguises worn by three farmhands who are blown away into the land of Oz by a tornado. Directed by Larry Semon, who also plays the farmhand disguised as a Scarecrow, the film features a young Oliver Hardy playing the farmhand/Tin Woodman who would go on to have a significant Hollywood film career as one half of the legendary comedy duo Laurel & Hardy.
Sponsored by Vidéothèque, admission to the Silent and Classic Movie Nights is free for Museum Members and a $10 donation for the General Public. Gates open at 7:30 p.m. for picnics with the show starting each Saturday after 8:00 p.m. These special screenings will take place on the lawn near the Palms Depot. Guests are encouraged to bring chairs or blankets to sit on, a small picnic to eat before the movies begin, and warm clothing. Beverages and snacks will be available with suggested donation. For more information about the program and featured movies, call the museum offices from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at (323) 225-2700.
Heritage Square Museum is a living history museum dedicated to telling the story of Los Angeles like no place else. The Museum is regularly open for tours on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays; from noon to 5 p.m. Admission is $10/adults, $8/seniors, $5/children ages 6-12. Heritage Square is located at 3800 Homer Street, off the 110 Arroyo Seco Parkway (110/Pasadena Freeway) at Avenue 43. For further information, visit our website.