The Michigan Theater is described as “Ann Arbor’s Historic Center for Fine Film & Performing Arts.” On January 28, 2007, visitors to the Michigan enjoyed the best of both worlds in a video broadcast of the Metropolitan Opera’s performance of The First Emperor from January 13, 2007.
One of the most enjoyable parts of visiting the Detroit Film Theatre is seeing a new schedule. My first glimpse of the wide variety of films that the DFT presents each season always fills me with a heady mixture of curiosity and anticipation.
In the fascinating new book Detroit’s Downtown Movie Palaces (2006, Arcadia Publishing), authors Michael Hauser and Marianne Weldon write:
“When reviewing the history of how downtown Detroit’s movie palaces evolved, one word certainly comes to mind, and that is visionary.”
The Redford Theatre recently lost one of its strongest supporters. Ethel O’Leary, familiar to many Redford visitors as an attendant of the ladies’ restroom, passed away in mid-January at the extraordinary age of 101.
When I first visited Los Angeles in 1991, I enjoyed many of the attractions that draw people to Southern California—the beaches, Disneyland, Hollywood, Dodger Stadium.
It was all fun, but one thing emotionally touched me more than these superficially pleasant entertainments. Universal Studios was hosting a poignant exhibit for Lucille Ball, who had died two years earlier. This wasn’t Mickey Mouse, this wasn’t a surfer hanging ten, this wasn’t the Jaws shark leaping out of the water.
From my research for the Looking Back feature of this web site, I’ve found that the movies of 1931 were affected by many trends and social forces. Sound was still a novelty, with the word “Talkie” often used to advertise films. New stars like Clark Gable and Barbara Stanwyck crowded out old silent movie favorites like Buster Keaton, Clara Bow, and John Gilbert.