Tampa film fans know that when it comes to beloved classics, there is no more authentic experience than seeing them in the city’s majestic movie palace. For more than a quarter of a century, the community has flocked to Tampa Theatre on hot Sunday afternoons to enjoy Summer Classics as they were meant to be seen: on the big screen, surrounded by friends, with a bag of fresh popcorn and a cold drink in hand.
This year, Tampa’s longest-running classic movie series celebrates nine decades of extraordinary filmmaking: The oldest movie, SAFETY LAST!, turns 95 this year and takes Tampa Theatre back to its roots of presenting silent films with live musical accompaniment on its original Mighty Wurlitzer Theatre Organ. The newest film, THE BLIND SIDE, has become a “modern classic” and will be followed by a very special audience Q&A with Quinton “Big Mike” Aaron. And thanks to more than 1,300 people who nominated titles and voted on the finalists, the sweeping epic GONE WITH THE WIND returns to the Summer Classics lineup in the “Fans Pick the Classic” spot on July 1.
Audiences are also invited stick around after select shows for hour-long Film Talks with some of the community’s most knowledgeable film experts, including retired Tampa Bay Times film critic Steve Persall, retired Sarasota Herald-Tribune critic George Meyer, Cox Radio film critic T.M. Powell, and Tampa Theatre’s own James DeFord, who will examine the films’ themes, structure and cultural significance, and answer questions from the audience. (Film Talks are included with movie admission.)
⦁ The Blind Side (2009) 2h 9m / PG-13 / Sports Drama
3:00pm Sunday, June 10
Following the screening, special guest Quinton “Big Mike” Aaron will answer audience questions and pose for photos. A portion of the proceeds from the show will benefit the Quinton Aaron Foundation, which provides hope and encouragement to children and students who are being bullied.
⦁ Blade Runner (1984) 1h 57m / R / Sci-Fi
3:00pm Sunday, June 17
⦁ To Kill a Mockingbird (1962) 2h 10m / Not Rated / Drama
3:00pm Sunday, June 24
⦁ Gone With The Wind (1939) 3h 58m / G / Drama
3:00pm Sunday, July 1
⦁ Dr. Strangelove (1964) 1h 43m / PG / Comedy
3:00pm Sunday, July 8
⦁ A Fish Called Wanda (1988) 1h 49m / R / Comedy
3:00pm Sunday, July 15
⦁ Safety Last! (1923) 1h 13m / Not Rated / Comedy
3:00pm Sunday, July 22
Tampa Theatre remains one of the only movie palaces in the world that can revive its original programming and present a silent film with live musical accompaniment on the theatre’s original 1926 Mighty Wurlitzer Theatre Organ. Nationally renowned theatre organist Dr. Steven Ball, who scored and played last summer’s sold-out screening of Metropolis, will join us once again for this very special LIVE presentation.
⦁ Sing-Along Mary Poppins (1964) 2h 19m / G / Family
TWO SHOWS! 3:00pm Saturday-Sunday, July 28-29
⦁ Rope (1948) 1h 20 / PG / Mystery
3:00pm Sunday, August 5
⦁ The Manchurian Candidate (1962) 2h 5m / PG-13 / Thriller
3:00pm Sunday, August 12
⦁ Blazing Saddles (1974) 1h 35m / R / Comedy
3:00pm Sunday, August 19
⦁ The Wizard of Oz (1939) 1h 52m / Not Rated / Fantasy
3:00pm Sunday, August 26
⦁ Casablanca (1942) 2h / PG / Drama
3:00pm Sunday, September 2
TICKETS are $10 ($7 for Tampa Theatre Members) for all of the regular films and $13 ($10 for Members) for sing-alongs and silent films, available at the historic Franklin Street Box Office or online at www.TampaTheatre.org ($2 convenience fee applies).
The Summer Classics Movie Series is presented by Bank of America, with media support by WEDU-PBS.