'Star Wars' Academy Screening

Alec Guinness and Mark Hamill in Star Wars

Part four of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' “Great To Be Nominated” series will kick off on Monday, April 23, with a screening of George Lucas' cornball space saga Star Wars. The 16-week series will showcase Best Picture also-rans that received the most Oscar nominations in a particular year. This fourth installment will cover films from 1977 to 1992. A different film will be presented each Monday evening, in addition to one Tuesday night screening, at 7:30 p.m. in the Academy's Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills.

The “Great To Be Nominated” screening of Star Wars coincides with the 30th anniversary of the highly influential and absurdly overrated B-sci-fi flick – one of the mid-to-late '70s Hollywood productions that all but killed off the studios' attempts at adult filmmaking that had begun about a decade earlier. The film stars Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Harrison Ford, and Alec Guinness.

According to the Academy's press release, George Lucas and “many of his fellow filmmakers” will be present for a post-film panel discussion.

Star Wars was nominated for ten Academy Awards, winning in six categories: Best Art Direction (John Barry, Norman Reynolds, Leslie Dilley; Set Decoration: Roger Christian), Costume Design (John Mollo), Film Editing (Paul Hirsch, Marcia Lucas, Richard Chew), Music - Original score (John Williams), Sound (Don MacDougall, Ray West, Bob Minkler, Derek Ball), and Visual Effects (John Stears, John Dykstra, Richard Edlund, Grant McCune, Robert Blalack). Additionally, Benjamin Burtt, Jr. received a Special Achievement Award for the creation of the alien, creature, and robot voices in the film.

The Oscar losers were supporting actor Alec Guinness, director and original screenplay writer Lucas, and producer Gary Kurtz.

Part four of the series will continue through August 20. “Great To Be Nominated” will then go on hiatus until Spring 2008, when part five will begin with James Ivory's first-rate drama The Remains of the Day (1993), starring Anthony Hopkins and Emma Thompson.

The complete screening schedule for part four of “Great To Be Nominated” is as follows:

April 23 Star Wars (1977)
April 24 (Tuesday) Julia (1977)
April 30 Heaven Can Wait (1978)
May 7 All That Jazz (1979)
May 14 Raging Bull (1980)
May 21 Reds (1981)
June 4 Tootsie (1982)
June 11 The Right Stuff (1983)
June 18 A Passage to India (1984)
June 25 The Color Purple (1985)
July 9 A Room with a View (1986)
July 16 Broadcast News (1987)
July 23 Dangerous Liaisons (1988)
July 30 Born on the Fourth of July (1989)
August 6 The Godfather, Part III (1990)
August 13 Bugsy (1991)
August 20 Howards End (1992)

Other nominees and assorted attractions from each year, including short subjects, behind-the-scenes footage, trailers, and music, will be incorporated into each evening's program.

Passes for part four of “Great To Be Nominated” will be available starting April 2 at a cost of $30 for film buffs wishing to see the series in its entirety. A $5 discount is available for those who wish to renew their passes from parts one, two or three of the series. Tickets for the first four individual screenings will be available starting April 9 at a cost of $5 for the general public and $3 for Academy members and students with a valid ID. They may be purchased by mail, in person at the Academy during regular business hours or, depending on availability, on the night of the screening when the doors open at 6:30 p.m. Curtain time for all features is 7:30 p.m., and pre-show elements will begin at 7 p.m. The Academy is located at 8949 Wilshire Boulevard in Beverly Hills. For more information, call 310-247-3600.

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