TCM Classic Film Festival: 'A Star Is Born' & 'Metropolis'

by Andre Soares

Judy Garland in A Star Is Born (top); Brigitte Helm in Metropolis (middle); Jean-Paul Belmondo, Jean Seberg in Breathless (bottom)

Turner Classic Movies' first-ever TCM Classic Film Festival, which will be held on April 22-25, 2010, in Hollywood, will feature the world premiere of a newly restored edition of George Cukor's A Star is Born (1954), starring Judy Garland and James Mason; the North American premiere of the restored version of Fritz Lang's Metropolis (1927); and a 50th anniversary screening of Jean-Luc Godard's Breathless, starring Jean-Paul Belmondo and Jean Seberg.

The TCM Classic Film Festival will also feature a special presentation of Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey, including a discussion with Oscar-winning visual-effects artist Douglas Trumbull.

Among other guests scheduled to participate are filmmaker Peter Bogdanovich and film critic Leonard Maltin. Additionally, TCM weekend-daytime host Ben Mankiewicz will introduce films throughout the festival.

Passes go on sale starting today. Prices ain't cheap – $499 to $1,199 – though the passes cover assorted special events and more than 50 presentations.

The premiere of A Star is Born will be the festival's opening night event on Thursday, April 22. TCM will screen a version of the film that was digitally restored by scanning original negatives. As per TCM's press release, “the result is much better picture quality of all elements of the 1983 restoration, with deeper and richer color than ever before.”

As a result of the 2008 discovery of a 16mm negative in Buenos Aires and the ensuing restoration, Metropolis will be screened with 30 minutes of additional footage unseen since the 1927 Berlin premiere. (Though sections of the 204-minute original film remain missing.) As per TCM's release, “the newly reconstructed Metropolis features extensive scenes that flesh out many of the supporting characters, fill in previously jarring gaps in the plot and provide additional back story.” The three-man musical ensemble Alloy Orchestra will provide live musical accompaniment.

Also as part of the festival, TCM is partnering with Vanity Fair to promote the publication of Vanity Fair's Tales of Hollywood (Penguin Books), edited by Graydon Carter. Special panels will feature Vanity Fair writers, along with actors and filmmakers who will talk about Hollywood's behind-the-scenes goings-on.

The central hub for the TCM Classic Film Festival will be Club TCM, located inside the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, the site of the first Academy Awards ceremony back in 1929. All passholders will be allowed entry into Club TCM, which will include a festival lounge, panel discussions, social events, a boutique, and poolside screenings. Other event locations include Grauman's Chinese Theatre and the Egyptian Theatre.

Festival passes are now on sale at The number of passes will be limited, especially for top-level “Spotlight” passes:

The “Classic” Festival Pass: $499 - Includes access to all film programs at festival venues; access to all Club TCM events, including festival headquarters, the festival lounge, panel discussions, social events, the festival boutique and poolside screenings at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel; an opening-night welcome party; Friday and Saturday evening passholder gatherings; the closing-night event; and a commemorative festival program.

The “Essential” Festival Pass: $599 - Includes all privileges available to “Classic” passholders, plus entry to the opening-night red carpet screening of A Star is Born at Grauman's Chinese Theatre and official TCM festival collectibles.

The “Spotlight” Festival Pass: $1,199 - Includes all privileges available to “Classic” and “Essential” passholders, plus entry to an exclusive opening-night party following the red carpet screening of A Star is Born, hosted by Vanity Fair magazine; priority entry to all events; a meet-and-greet breakfast with Robert Osborne; and an official TCM Classic Film Festival poster signed by Osborne.

Photos: Turner Classic Movies

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Philbert -

A bit of trivia. The photo of Judy Garland singing The Man that Got away is not from the film. That photo was from an earlier take of the song which was not used. In the film release she is wearing a different outfit with a white collar and her hair is combed back.

Andre -

Interesting. I've seen “A Star Is Born” a couple of times and didn't notice that.

Anna Maria -

Awsome!! I'm dying to see the restored print of Metropolis one of my favorite moves ever made. This is incredible news.


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