Sunday, May 26, 2024 May 26, 2024
91° F Dallas, TX



Movie buffs, rejoice. VCR owners, stock up on blanks. Couch potatoes, relax. For eight days beginning Sunday, August 14, every night is movie night on Channel 13. Thanks to the cooperation of Dallas/Fort Worth commercial television stations, Channel 13 will be able to treat its viewers to such silver screen classics as Oliver, Sleeper, Gigi, Sergeant York, and Oklahoma!

In a unique show of support, every commercial station in the market has agreed to loan Channel 13 an audience-pleaser from its film vault. The motive may not be apparent at first, but it’s really very simple: Public and commercial broadcasters, once perceived as competitors, are coming to see themselves as partners, each with a different role to play in American television.

“We’re fortunate to have such enlightened and generous colleagues here in North Texas,” says KERA President Richard Meyer. “Channel 11 has helped us out by simulcasting portions of the last two Channel 13 Auctions, and Channel 13 viewers last summer were treated to Channel 8’s Giant, Channel 11’s The Lion in Winter, and Channel 39’s Fiddler on the Roof.

“Never before in the history of American television has every commercial station in a market donated simultaneously to a public television outlet. These donations by channels 4, 5, 8, 11, 21, 27, 33, and 39 are their way of challenging Channel 13’s viewers to put their support behind public television. We’re grateful to each and every station, and I hope Channel 13’s viewers will tune in, enjoy the movies, and meet that challenge.”

Leading off KERA’s movie marathon Sunday, August 14, at 7 p.m. is Oliver, loaned by KTVT Channel 11. This rousing musical version of Charles Dickens’ classic Oliver Twist was directed by Sir Carol Reed and stars Mark Lester, Ron Moody, and Oliver Reed. The 1968 film magically recreates the London of the early nineteenth century and earned five Academy Awards, including best picture and director.

A movie double-feature starts Monday night at 7 with Debbie Reynolds, Harve Presnell, and Ed Begley starring in The Unsinkable Molly Brown, the rowdy and raucus 1964 musical about a country girl with citified ambitions penned by Meredith (The Music Man) Willson. Molly was loaned to Channel 13 by KDFI Channel 27.

Monday at 11 p.m. the projector keeps rolling with KDFI’s Sergeant York, director Howard Hawks’ classic tale about Alvin York, the peace-loving Tennessee mountain boy who returned home from World War 1 as America’s greatest hero. Gary Cooper received an Oscar as best actor in the title role.

Tuesday, August 16, Woody Allen’s Sleeper comes to Channel 13 by way of KDAF Channel 33. Co-starring Diane Keaton, the 1973 comedy is one of Allen’s funniest -the misadventures of a hapless twentieth-century nerd who goes in for minor surgery and awakens from his anesthesia 200 years later.

The next night at 7, Maurice Chevalier and Leslie Caron star in Gigi, the beloved 1958 musical that received nine Academy Awards, including best picture, director, writing, photography, costumes, song, and score. KXTX Channel 39 donated Gigi.

From KDFW Channel 4 comes Thursday night’s movie, Queen of the Stardust Ballroom, airing at 7. Filmed in 1975, this unusual love story stars Maureen Stapleton and Charles Durning as a widowed grandmother and a married letter carrier who meet, dance, and fall in love in one another’s arms at the Stardust Ballroom.

Friday night’s offering is, appropriately, His Girl Friday, provided to Channel 13 by KXAS Channel 5 and airing at 8. Cary Grant and Rosalind Russell star in this hilarious 1940 remake of The Front Page, which itself was based on the wildly successful stage play written by Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur in 1928.

Oklahoma! comes roaring down the plains and onto North Texas TV screens Saturday, August 20, at 7 p.m., courtesy of the movie moguls at KTXA Channel 21. Gordon MacRae, Shirley Jones, Rod Steiger, and a huge cast bring life to this lovingly cornball -in the best sense of the word – adaptation of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s immortal Broadway musical.

Nobody swings a musket like John Wayne, and he swings it plenty in The Alamo, the broad-shouldered Hollywood epic that concludes Channel 13’s August film festival Sunday, August 21, at 6 p.m. Thanks to WFAA Channel 8, a cast of stars including Wayne, Richard Widmark, Laurence Harvey, Richard Boone, Carlos Arruza, and Chill Wills will recreate Texas’ most famous battle.

In addition to these nine classics from other stations, the Channel 13 Film Festival features some great movies from the KERA film vault. Don’t miss Rob Reiner and Christopher Guest in This Is Spinal Tap on Wednesday, August 17, at 11 p.m.; Bruce Springsteen in No Nukes on Thursday, August 18, at 11:30 p.m.; Here Comes Mr. Jordan, starring Robert Montgomery and Claude Rains, on Saturday, August 20, at 5 p.m.; and Jack Benny and Ann Sheridan in George Washington Slept Here Sunday, August 21, at 3 p.m. It’s all TV worth watching on Channel 13.

Film Festival Schedule

Oliver Sunday, August 14, at 7 p.m.

The Unsinkable Molly Brown Monday, August 15, at 7 p.m.

Sergeant York Monday, August 15, at 11 p.m.

Sleeper Tuesday. August 16, at 7 p.m.

Gigi Wednesday. August 17, at 7 p.m.

This Is Spinal Tap Wednesday, August 17, at 11 p.m.

Queen of the Stardust Ballroom, Thursday, August 18, at 7 p.m.

No Nukes Thursday, August 18, at 11 p.m.

His Girl Friday Friday, August 19, at 8 p.m.

Here Comes Mr. Jordan Saturday, August 20, at 5 p.m.

Oklahoma! Saturday, August 20, at 7 p.m.

George Washington Slept Here Sunday, August 21, at 3 p.m.

The Alamo Sunday, August 21, at 6 p.m.


By Guy Steele

Try your luck on these trivia questions. Tune in each night of the film festival for the answers.

1.How many Oscars did Oliver win?

2. What relative of Oliver co-star Oliver Reed was alsoinvolved in the film?

3. What was Debbie Reynolds’ rather unusual weddingring in The Unsinkable Molly Brown”!

4. On what ship did Molly set sail?

5. What were the two conditions laid down by AlvinYork in return for his cooperation in the making ofSergeant York?

6. What well-known writer-actor-filmmaker co-wroteSergeant YorK?

7. Who composed and performed the score of Steeper?

8. What TV show gave Woody Allen his start, whowere its two top writers, and what was Woody’sfunction?

9. Which James Bond epic featured Gigi co-star LouisJourdan as a villain?

10. How many Oscars did Gigi ’win?


11. For what film did Queen of the Stardust Ballroomco-star Maureen Stapleton win her Oscar?

12. Stapleton’s dance partner in Queen of the StardustBallroom is versatile actor Charles Durning. Whatwas his occupation before becoming an actor?

13. At one point in His Girl Friday, Cary Grant mentionsa friend who wouldn’t mistreat him. Who is thisunseen friend and what is special about him?

14. What Broadway hit served as the basis for His GirlFriday, and what writer was involved in both projects?

15. What unlikely actor made his singing debut inOklahoma!?

16. In what other film did Oklahoma! co-stars GordonMacRae and Shirley Jones co-star?

17. Neophyte director John Wayne was at the helm ofThe Alamo. Who was his uncredited second unitdirector?

18. How many Waynes were involved in The Alamo,and in what capacities?

Guy Steele is owner of Stage Screen Gallery on McKinney.