Jean Harlow Centennial Celebration
March 5 - 8
March 3 marks the centennial of one of the screen's most dazzling presences, Jean Harlow (1911-1937), whose effervescence, exuberance and knack for playing good girls with the sex appeal of bad ones made her unique in Hollywood's pantheon of leading ladies. After finding fame while still a teen as one of Howard Hughes' discoveries in HELL'S ANGELS, Harlow starred in a string of sparkling comedies before dying at the age of 26. As recently showcased in AFI Silver's recent screenings of RED DUST and BOMBSHELL during the fall's Victor Fleming retrospective, Harlow's appeal has not diminished with the passage of time.
Covering a story about controversial business dealings by the rich and powerful Schuyler family, scrappy newshound Robert Williams falls for the charms of their daughter Jean Harlow and elopes with her, to the patrician family's shock and the chagrin of Williams' fellow reporter Loretta Young, who secretly has a crush on her workmate. But are these two lovebirds from different worlds really right for each other? The first of many collaborations between director Frank Capra and screenwriter Robert Riskin, who would become a steady pairing throughout the 1930s.
DIR Frank Capra; SCR Robert Riskin, Jo Swerling, from a story by Harry Chandlee. US, 1931, b&w, 90 min. NOT RATED
Sat, Mar 5, 3:00; Tue, Mar 8, 7:00
"She may be his wife, but she's my fiancee!" After alleging that socialite Myrna Loy is a home wrecker, newspaperman Spencer Tracy concocts an elaborate scheme to escape a $5 million libel suit brought by the miffed Loy against his paper: prove that his accusation is correct. He steers Loy toward well-known lady killer William Powell. Meanwhile, Tracy arranges for his own long-suffering fiancee, Jean Harlow, to secretly marry Powell. What could possibly go wrong? Great comedic performances from four iconic stars, directed by Jack Conway; Maurine Watkins, playwright of the original play "Chicago," co-wrote the screenplay. Oscar nomination for Best Picture.
DIR Jack Conway; SCR Maurine Watkins, Howard Emmett Rogers, George Oppenheimer; PROD Lawrence Weingarten. US, 1936, b&w, 98 min. NOT RATED
Sat, Mar 5, 7:20; Sun, Mar 6, 4:45