HOLLYWOOD — Theatrical screenings for DVD releases have suddenly started proliferating.
Disney is presenting a screening of the classic “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea” with the American Cinematheque at the El Capitan Theatre at 7:30 p.m. on May 20 to celebrate the double-disc special edition DVD release the same day. Screening will feature an introduction by “20,000” director Richard Fleischer.
Warner is also getting into the mix, presenting most of the screenings in L.A., New York and at the Cannes Film Festival.
Director Roland Joffe presented the newly restored version of “The Mission” on Monday at a special screening at the Arclight Theater as part of the Hollywood Master Storytellers program.
Warner Home Video’s June 10 special edition DVD releases “The Right Stuff” and “Once Upon a Time in America” will play at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York on Saturday and Sunday.
“America” star Robert DeNiro will introduce the extended international release version of the 1984 film at Tribeca on May 11. American Cinematheque Egyptian Theater in L.A. will present a screening of the title on June 3, followed by a panel discussion featuring star James Woods, producer Arnon Milchan, executive in charge of production Fred Caruso, and others.
Filmmaker Philip Kaufman, Gen. “Chuck” Yeager and members of the cast of “The Right Stuff” will be on hand for another screening of the movie at the American Cinematheque on June 9. The film also will be screened at a gala on June 20-21 at Cape Kennedy honoring this year’s Astronaut Hall of Fame inductees.
At Cannes, Warner is presenting the world debut and the first-ever DVD premiere screening at the fest of the feature-length DVD collection of nine “Matrix”-related anime shorts called “The Animatrix” at the DVD eSpace on May 16, the day after the world premiere at Cannes of the theatrical release “The Matrix Reloaded.”
Also at Cannes, WHV’s restored version of “Giant,” which debuts June 10 on DVD, will be screened at this year’s amFAR Cinema Against AIDS Benefit on May 21. Elizabeth Taylor, star of the 1956 film, will serve as chairman of the annual gala, which is sponsored this year by Miramax Films, De Beers and Volkswagen, and which will include guests Elton John, Harvey Weinstein, Sharon Stone and Elizabeth Hurley.
WHV’s restored version of the Charlie Chaplin film “Modern Times,” part of the first wave of a new Chaplin DVD collection coming July 1 in partnership with M2K, will close the festival May 25 as part of a tribute to Chaplin with the screening presented by Geraldine Chaplin.
A documentary written and produced by Richard Schickel, “Charlie: The Life and Art of Charles Chaplin,” part of the second wave of the collection coming in September, will screen at Cannes on May 22.
Warner also will show “Mildred Pierce,” “Yankee Doodle Dandy,” “Scarecrow,” “Shock Corridor” and “The Adventures of Robin Hood” (1938) in the restored section of the festival.
Back on American shores, Dustin Hoffman will host a Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra fund-raiser screening at UCLA on May 31 of the Chaplin film “City Lights.”
Schickel and Chaplin are also expected to attend the Chaplin “Life and Art” screening on opening night at the AFI Silverdocs Festival in Washington, D.C. on June 18.
(Jennifer Netherby is a reporter for Variety sister publication DVD Exclusive.)