Avalon Theatre Hosts Hollywood Blacklist Film Series, Q&A

WASHINGTON — It’s the only non-profit film center in the nation’s capital.

This weekend, the historic Avalon Theatre will host a special film series looking back at the 1950s Hollywood Blacklist period when “red scare” McCarthyism cost many progressive screenwriters their jobs. It will also explore how this era of political paranoia and gutsy journalism relates to today.

The series kicks off at 5: 15 p.m. Thursday with “The Way We Were” (1973). The film stars Barbra Streisand as a college liberal who clashes politically with her conservative boyfriend, Robert Redford. If you happen to miss it Thursday, you can check out an encore presentation Saturday at 10:30 a.m.

Also on Thursday night, be sure to check out “Good Night and Good Luck” (2004) at 8 p.m. The film chronicles the brave TV journalism of Edward R. Murrow in taking down Sen. Joseph McCarthy.

Saturday brings “Trumbo” (2015) at 10:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. Bryan Cranston plays blacklisted screenwriter Dalton Trumbo, who used pseudonyms to pen “Roman Holiday” and “Spartacus.”

It all builds to the grand finale Sunday with the classic western “High Noon” (1952), which was written as an allegory for McCarthyism. Screenwriter Carl Foreman was placed on the Hollywood Blacklist after refusing to “name names” before the House Un-American Activities Committee.

After the “High Noon” screening, journalist Kathleen Matthews will host a special Q&A with Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Glenn Frankel about his new book “High Noon: The Hollywood Blacklist and the Making of an American Classic,” exploring the film’s classic moments and deeper political themes.

Click here for more information on The Avalon film series.

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