Turner Classic Movies Spring Schedule Highlights
via press release:
TCM Spring Highlights
TCM SPOTLIGHT: 150th Anniversary of the American Civil War – Monday and Wednesday nights in April
As America commemorates the 150th anniversary of the Civil War, TCM will examine how Hollywood has depicted this nation’s bloody internal conflict and how it affected people both on the battlefield and at home. The extensive lineup will feature a different collection of films each Monday and Wednesday centering on a particular theme. TCM’s Civil War programming begins April 4 with a night of epics, including the beloved Gone with the Wind (1939). Among the month’s themes are movies about the homefront (April 6), silent films (April 11), comedy and musicals (April 13), Civil War westerns (April 18 and 20); battlefield stories (April 25) and films about politics and postwar reconstruction (April 27).
STAR OF THE MONTH: RAY MILLAND – Tuesday nights in April
Suave and sophisticated, yet with an air of everyman about him, Ray Milland was an enormously popular and well-respected actor for decades. TCM will pay tribute to the Oscar®-winning actor every Tuesday night in April with 29 films, including the film that earned him Hollywood’s highest honor, Billy Wilder’s searing drama The Lost Weekend (1945) on April 26. The salute will begin on April 5 with several examples of Milland’s comic abilities, including The Major and the Minor (1942) and the TCM premiere of The Crystal Ball (1943). Milland shows a darker side on April 12, with Alfred Hitchcock’s Dial M for Murder(1954) and the TCM debut of So Evil My Love (1948). The same year he gave his Oscar-winning performance, he also starredKitty (1945), which leads the April 19 lineup. And on April 26, The Lost Weekend will be followed by six films, three that came after that landmark film and three from the earliest days of his career.
RARE GEMS – Sunday, April 3 – Fragments at 8 p.m. (ET); Unseen Cinema at 10 p.m. (ET)
This April, TCM has a two special treats for film lovers, a four-hour collection of true cinematic rarities. The night will kick off at 8 p.m. (ET) with Fragments, a fascinating compilation of surviving bits and pieces of films that have otherwise been lost to history. Presented in collaboration with the world-renowned Academy Film Archive, this collection includes clips of several well-known actors and actresses and provides a tiny glimpse at what their complete performances might have been like. Then at 10 p.m. (ET), TCM will salute America’s rich – but often unheralded – avant-garde filmmakers. Unseen Cinemafeatures a mesmerizing collection of experimental, mind-bending works from the early days of cinema. It’s going to be a night no cineaste will want to miss.
GUEST PROGRAMMER: CHITA RIVERA – Thursday, April 7, beginning at 8 p.m. (ET)
Musical phenomenon Chita Rivera takes the seat opposite TCM host Robert Osborne for an evening of movies chosen by the star herself. Chita Rivera, the legendary star Sweet Charity (1969), joins Osborne on Thursday, April 8, to introduce four of her favorite films, all based on great novels. Her choices include the eerie ghost story The Uninvited (1944), the monster classic Frankenstein (1931), the colorful live-action version of The Jungle Book (1942) and the gothic romance Wuthering Heights (1939).
TCM LOST & FOUND: The Mysterious House of Dr. C (1966) – Sunday, April 17, at 8 p.m. (ET)
The fascinating fantasy is actually the result of two very different artistic visions mashed together through a complex backstory. Originally intended as an art film, the film saw first light as a ballet-and-pantomime performance of the 19th century story Coppelia, lovingly choreographed by JoAnna Kneeland and directed by her husband Ted Kneeland, with Dame Alicia Markova serving as artistic consultant. Walter Slezak stars as the title character, a daffy inventor who creates a clockwork girl. The original film was pulled from public view over legal problems. When the legal hurdles were finally cleared, the Kneelands asked producer Samuel L. Bronston to oversee a complete re-edited version, which removed some of the more mind-bending elements and added includes voice-over narration.
JESUS ROCKS – Sunday, April 24 – Jesus Christ Superstar (1973) at 8 p.m. (ET); Godspell (1973) at 10 p.m. (ET)
TCM celebrates Easter with two unique visions of Jesus that hit theaters the same year. First up is Norman Jewison’s adaptation of Andrew Lloyd Weber and Tim Rice’s Jesus Christ Superstar (1973), one of the first and most influential rock operas of the decade. Ted Neely stars as Jesus, with Golden Globe® nominee Yvonne Elliman reprising her concept album and Broadway performance as Mary Magdalene; Carl Anderson as a fiery Judas, controversially painted here as a tragic figure; and Josh Mostel (son of Zero Mostel) as a fey and very funny King Herod. The score includes such hit songs as “Superstar,” “I Don’t Know How to Love Him” and “Everything’s Alright.” At 10 p.m., Stephen Schwartz and John-Michael Tebalak’s adventurous musical Godspell (1973) is primarily a string of song-and-dance numbers and comedy sketches based on the parables of Jesus from the Gospel of Matthew, with New York City locations providing the backdrop. Victor Garber as Jesus, David Haskell as John the Baptist/Judas and Lynne Thigpen as one of Jesus’ followers stand out in this screen adaptation by David Greene. Songs include “Day by Day,” “You are the Light of the World” and “By My Side.”
2011 TCM CLASSIC FILM FESTIVAL – Thursday, April 28-Sunday, May 1 in Hollywood
The multi-faceted TCM Classic Film Festival returns to Hollywood with more than 60 screenings, including special introductions, guest appearances, panel discussions and more. Throughout the weekend, TCM host Robert Osborne and weekend daytime host Ben Mankiewicz will conduct their normal on-air hosting duties live from the TCM Classic Film Festival. TCM’s on-air weekend lineup will include several presentations designed to give viewers at home a taste of the festivities in Hollywood.
TCM SALUTES GREGORY PECK – Thursday, April 28, beginning at 6 a.m. (ET)
On Thursday, April 28, TCM will feature two tributes in conjunction with the TCM Classic Film Festival in Hollywood. During the daytime, TCM will present six films starring legendary actor Gregory Peck, whose career is also being celebrated at the festival. The day includes The Yearling (1946), Captain Horatio Hornblower (1951), On the Beach(1959) and The Big Country (1958), as well as the spy films, The Chairman(1969) and Night People (1954).
TCM SALUTES BERNARD HERRMANN –Thursday, April 28, beginning at 8 p.m. (ET)
During the 2011 TCM Classic Film Festival in Hollywood, TCM will pay tribute to one of the greatest and most innovative film composers of all time, Bernard Herrmann, in celebration of the 100th year of his birth. In conjunction with that salute in Hollywood, TCM will air a full slate of films featuring Herrmann’s scores, including three from his prolific collaborations with filmmakers Orson Welles, represented here by The Magnificent Ambersons (1942), and Alfred Hitchcock, featuring andThe Wrong Man (1956) and North by Northwest (1959). The night opens with Herrmann’s score for The Snows of Kilimanjaro (1952) and ends with the Nicolas Ray film noir On Dangerous Ground(1951).
ROYAL ROMANCE – Friday, April 29, beginning at 8 p.m. (ET)
TCM cordially invites film lovers and royal watchers to join in celebrating the nuptials of England’s Prince William and Kate Middleton with an evening of romances fit for a king and queen. The night starts off in musical fashion as Fred Astaire and Jane Powell find love in London just as Queen Elizabeth II prepares to walk down the aisle in Royal Wedding (1951). Next up, Audrey Hepburn won an Oscar for her performance as a spritely princess in Roman Holiday(1953), co-starring Gregory Peck. The night also features Leslie Caron as Cinderella in The Glass Slipper (1955), Grace Kelly as a princess opposite Alec Guinness in The Swan (1956) and Ramon Navarro as a prince in Ernst Lubitsch’s The Student Prince in Old Heidelberg(1927).
BY GERSHWIN –Saturday, April 30, beginning at 6 a.m. (ET)
In conjunction with the 2011 TCM Classic Film Festival’s celebration of the songs of George and Ira Gershwin comes this night of musical delights, beginning with Robert Osborne and Alec Baldwin hosting a glorious 60th anniversary restoration of the Oscar-winning An American in Paris (1951), which will also be the opening night film of TCM’s weekend festivities in Hollywood. The lineup also features Girl Crazy (1943), starring Judy Garland and Mickey Rooney; Rhapsody in Blue (1945), a biopic of George Gershwin with Robert Alda as the composer and such luminaries as Al Jolson, Oscar Levant and Paul Whiteman appearing as themselves; Shall We Dance (1937), the seventh pairing of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers and another film slated to be featured during the festival in Hollywood; and Give a Girl a Break (1953), directed by Stanley Donen and featuring great footwork by Debbie Reynolds, Marge & Gower Champion and a young Bob Fosse.
THE ESSENTIALS – Hosted by Alec Baldwin and Robert Osborne – Saturdays at 8 p.m.
• April 2 – The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner (1962) – part of a night celebrating actor Tom Courtenay
• April 9 – Splendor in the Grass (1961) – first presentation in a night of Elia Kazan films
• April 16 – Ball of Fire (1941) – Howard Hawks’ screwball comedy with Barbara Stanwyck and Gary Cooper
• April 23 – Gunga Din (1939) – part of a night celebrating Victor McLaglen
• April 30 – An American in Paris (1951) – opening film of the 2011 TCM Classic Film Festival and part of TCM’s night-long celebration of George and Ira Gershwin
TCM UNDERGROUND – Friday late-night cult classics
• April 1 at 2 a.m. – Secret Ceremony (1968)
• April 8 at 2:15 a.m. – Galaxy of Terror (1981)
• April 15 at 2 a.m. – Daughter of Horror (1957)
• April 22 at 2 a.m. – Strange Behavior (1981)
TCM SPOTLIGHT: PLAYING THE PONIES – Tuesdays in May
TCM gallops into summer with an entire month full of cinematic horses each Tuesday in May. It’s off to the races on May 3 with a night of horse-racing films, beginning with the Marx Brothers in the comedy classic A Day at the Races (1937). Betting on horses takes center stage May 10, with a roster that includes The Rocking Horse Winner(1949). The next two Tuesdays feature films with kids and horses, with such titles as National Velvet (1944) and The Black Stallion (1979). And on the last day of the month, TCM salutes horses from the Old West, starting with the TCM premiere of Roy Rogers in My Pal Trigger(1946).
STAR OF THE MONTH: ESTHER WILLIAMS – Thursdays in May
May is going to be all wet as TCM salutes Hollywood’s ultimate bathing beauty, Esther Williams. The month includes three Thursday nights packed with some of her most popular musicals, includingBathing Beauty(1944) on May 5, Neptune’s Daughter (1949) on May 12 and Million Dollar Mermaid(1952) on May 19. The last Thursday of the month will feature some of Williams’ non-musical roles, beginning with the TCM premiere of the thriller An Unguarded Moment (1956).
DIRECTED BY CALVACANTI – Sunday, May 1
One of the highlights of the TCM Classic Film Festival in Hollywood is the North American premiere of director Alberto Cavalcanti’s restoredWent the Day Well (1942). To commemorate that event, TCM will pay tribute to the renowned director with a special double-feature. The evening begins with Cavalcanti’s evocative adaptation of Charles Dickens’ Nicholas Nickleby (1947), starring Derek Bond, Cedric Hardwicke and Sally Ann Howes. Up next is the gritty film noir They Made Me a Fugitive (1947), with Trevor Howard.
TCM SALUTES EBERTFEST – Monday, May 2, beginning at 8 p.m. (ET)
Each spring, movie lovers from around the world flock to Champaign, Ill., for Ebertfest, the festival created by Pulitzer Prize-winning film critic Roger Ebert. TCM salutes the 13-year-old event with a night of extraordinary films, including the TCM premieres of Errol Morris’ Gates of Heaven (1978), Carl Deal and Tia Lessin’s Oscar-nominatedTrouble the Water (2008), Jeff Nichols’ award-winning drama Shotgun Stories (2007) and Paul Cox’s unique romance Innocence (2000). The night also includes Jacques Tati’s delightful Play Time (1967).
TCM CELEBRATES MOTHER’S DAY – Sunday, May 8, beginning at 8 p.m. (ET)
TCM salutes moms everywhere with a night of beloved matriarchs, including Irene Dunne in I Remember Mama (1948) and Barbara Stanwyck in Stella Dallas (1937). The lineup also includes the TCM premiere of Mikio Naruse’s tender Japanese drama Okaasan (Mother)(1952).
TCM GUEST PROGRAMMER: PETER GUBER – Monday, May 9, beginning at 8 p.m. (ET)
Peter Guber, chairman and CEO of Mandalay Entertainment and producer of such memorable films as Rain Man and The Color Purple, joins TCM host Robert Osborne in an award-winning double feature. First up is David Lean’s epic Lawrence of Arabia (1962), starring Peter O’Toole and Omar Sharif, followed by Roland Joffé’s gripping Vietnam-era drama The Killing Fields (1984), with Sam Waterston, John Malkovich and Oscar-winner Haing S. Ngor.
TCM MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND – Friday, May 27-Monday, May 30
Each Memorial Day weekend, TCM sets aside its entire schedule to salute the men and women who have put their lives on the line for the sake of their countries. This year’s four-day showcase features 39 films, including such enduring classics as Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo (1944), They Were Expendable (1945), The Story of G.I. Joe(1945), Battleground (1949), Objective Burma! (1945) and The Best Years of Our Lives (1946). Also included are the TCM premieres ofHell to Eternity (1960), Paratrooper (1953), Screaming Eagles(1956) and the comedy The Tanks are Coming (1951)
THE ESSENTIALS – Hosted by Alec Baldwin and Robert Osborne – Saturdays at 8 p.m.
• May 7 – The Bicycle Thief (aka Bicycle Thieves) (1948) – the groundbreaking Italian drama from Vittorio De Sica.
• May 14 – East of Eden (1955) – John Steinbeck’s family drama and part of a night dedicated to actor Raymond Massey.
• May 21 – Cat People (1942) – part of a night dedicated to actress Simone Simon.
• May 28 – Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo (1944) – a gripping war film presented as part of TCM’s Memorial Day Weekend.
TCM UNDERGROUND – Friday late-night cult classics
• May 6 at 2 a.m. – Santa Claus (1959)
• May 13 at 2 a.m. – Snapshot (1978)
• May 20 at 2:15 a.m. – Jigoku (1960)
TCM SPOTLIGHT: Drive-In Double Features: Monsters, Mutants and Martians – Thursdays in June
There was a time when summer meant packing up the car and heading to the drive-in for a night of fun and frights with monster-movie double feature. Although most of the country’s drive-ins have died out, TCM is bringing the drive-in to the living room with a month of great double bills each Thursday night. The excitement begins June 2 with two pairs of Japanese monster movies making their TCM debut: the originalGodzilla, King of the Monsters (1956) and Rodan (1958), followed byGhidorah: The Three-Headed Monster (1965) and Godzilla vs. Monster Zero (1970). (In keeping with the theme, TCM will present these films as American drive-in audiences would have seen them, with the Japanese dialogue dubbed into English.) The night also includes the TCM premiere of The Valley of Gwangi (1969), featuring special effects by Ray Harryhausen. June 9 is packed with creepy creature features, including the outstanding Them! (1954) and the TCM debut of The Cosmic Monsters(1958), Tarantula (1955) and The Wasp Woman (1959). TCM gets large on June 16 with the premiere ofThe Attack of the 50 Foot Woman (1958) before handing things over to the ladies with Zsa Zsa Gabor in Queen of Outer Space (1958) and Yvonne Craig in Mars Needs Women (1968). On June 23, monsters are on the rampage with such titles as It Came from Beneath the Sea(1955) and The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms (1953), both featuring effects by Ray Harryhausen, as well as the TCM premieres of The Giant Behemoth (1959) and The Phantom from 10,000 Leagues(1955). The month ends with June 30 double features focusing on blobs, including the seminal classic The Blob (1958); radioactive creatures, such as The Magnetic Monster(1953); and killers from space, including The Thing from Another World (1951).
STAR OF THE MONTH: JEAN SIMMONS – Tuesdays in June
Each Tuesday in June, TCM will shine its spotlight actress Jean Simmons, who graced the silver screen for 65 years. The month-long tribute begins June 7 with a collection of some of Simmons’ early British films, including David Lean’s Great Expectations (1946) and the Michael Powell-Emeric Pressburger drama Black Narcissus(1947). Her later work in England is on display June 14, with such titles as Trio(1950) and the film that earned her the first of two Oscar nominations, Hamlet (1948). On June 21, TCM presents an evening of Simmons’ Hollywood films from the 1950s, including The Actress(1953), Young Bess (1953) and Guys and Dolls (1955). TCM’s salute to Simmons wraps up on June 28 with work from the late ‘50s and 1960s, including the TCM premiere of Home Before Dark (1958) and her Oscar-nominated performance in Elmer Gantry (1960).
JUNE BRIDES – Friday, June 3 – Saturday, June 4
TCM celebrates the institution of marriage with two nights of memorable classics. On June 3, the network shows the funny side of marriage with such wedding comedies as Father of the Bride (1950),June Bride (1948) and the musical delight High Society (1956). And on June 4, TCM takes a more serious approach to marriage, with a night of dramas that includes Dodsworth (1936), Payment on Demand (1951) and Shoot the Moon (1982).
JAZZING IT UP WITH CLINT EASTWOOD – Wednesday, June 8, beginning at 8 p.m. (ET)
In addition to be an Oscar-winning filmmaker and one of the most popular film actors of all time, Clint Eastwood is a major jazz aficionado, not to mention an accomplished musician and composer. Over the years, he has crafted numerous jazz-laced films and produced acclaimed documentaries on jazz legends. TCM celebrates his work with an evening of extraordinary films. The night begins with the most recent jazz biography produced by Eastwood, the documentary Dave Brubeck: In His Own Sweet Way (2010). It is followed by three TCM premieres follow: the Eastwood-produced documentary Thelonious Monk: Straight, No Chaser (1988), the extraordinary gathering of jazz legends of Eastwood After Hours: Live at Carnegie Hall (1997) and Eastwood’s lovingly crafted biography of saxophone legend Charlie Parker, Bird (1988), starring Forrest Whitaker.
CLOSET BLACKMAIL – Friday, June 10, beginning at 8 p.m. (ET)
TCM celebrates Pride month with a look back at a time when coming out of the closet could mean the end of a career…or worse. The June 10 triple feature opens with Henry Fonda, Cliff Robertson and Oscar nominee Lee Tracy in The Best Man (1964). Based on a play by Gore Vidal, it follows the behind-the-scenes wrangling at a political party convention, where allegations of homosexual conduct threaten a candidate’s chances at scoring the party’s nomination for President of the United States. Next up, Otto Preminger’s Advise & Consent(1962) stars Henry Fonda as a nominee for Secretary of State whose chances are dimmed when the head of the Senate committee vetting his nomination is blackmailed over past homosexual liaisons. The cast of familiar faces includes Franchot Tone, Lew Ayres, Walter Pidgeon, Charlest Laughton, Don Murray, Peter Lawford, Gene Tiernery, Burgess Meredith, Paul Ford, George Grizzard, Inga Swenson, Will Geer and the seemingly immortal Betty White. The night ends with the British drama Victim (1961), starring Dirk Bogarde as a closeted gay lawyer on the trail of a blackmailer who threatens gay men with exposure. At the time of its release, the film was seen as a plea for England to reform its laws making homosexual activity a crime.
TCM GUEST PROGRAMMER: CHRIS ISAAK – Wednesday, June 15, beginning at 8 p.m (ET)
Chris Isaak, a Grammy-nominated American songwriter and musician whose career includes the series The Chris Isaak Show and the recent talk show The Chris Isaak Hour, will join Robert Osborne in introducing four films from the 1950. Isaak’s choices include two outstanding thrillers, Charles Laughton’s The Night of the Hunter (1955) and Orson Welles’ Touch of Evil (1958), as well as the sexually chargedGod’s Little Acre (1958) and the media-hype drama A Face in the Crowd (1957).
FATHER’S DAY WITH THE DUKE – Sunday, June 19, beginning at 8 p.m. (ET)
TNT celebrates Father’s Day with two of the greatest westerns ever made. First up, Essentials Jr. host and father Bill Hader (Saturday Night Live) introduces John Ford’s Stagecoach (1939), the compelling western that turned John Wayne into a box-office star and co-star Thomas Mitchell into an Oscar winner. The extraordinary cast includes Claire Trevor, John Carradine and Andy Devine. Then, Ford’s emotionally powerful western drama The Searchers (1956) sends the Duke on the trail for his niece, who has been captured by Comanche warriors. Beautifully shot in Monument Valley, this complex, racially charged western co-stars Jeffrey Hunter, Natalie Wood, and several members of Ford’s stock company, including Ward Bond, Harry Carey Jr., Vera Miles, John Qualen, Ken Curtis and Olive Carey.
HITCHCOCK IN THE ‘50s – Monday, June 27, beginning at 8 p.m. (ET)
TCM celebrates the master of suspense with a night of five classic thrillers from the 1950s. The evening starts with Stage Fright (1950), a whodunit featuring Jane Wyman as an aspiring actress trying to track down a killer. Marlene Dietrich, Michael Wilding and Richard Todd co-star. Next up, Montgomery Clift is a priest involved in murder in I Confess (1953), followed by Dial M for Murder (1954), with Ray Milland out to kill his adulterous wife, played by Grace Kelly. Robert Cummings and a scene-stealing John Williams co-star. Henry Fonda tries to clear his name after being accused of murder in The Wrong Man (1956), co-starring Vera Miles. And Farley Granger gets entangled with a diabolical murderer in the tense thriller Strangers on a Train(1951), featuring a menacing performance by Robert Walker.
ESSENTIALS JR. – Hosted by Bill Hader – Sundays at 8 p.m. (ET), beginning June 5
• The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938) – a rollicking adventure starring Errol Flynn and Olivia de Havilland.
• The General (1927) – the classic silent comedy from the imagination of Buster Keaton.
• Stagecoach (1939) – John Ford’s landmark western that turned John Wayne into a box-office star.
• Singin’ in the Rain (1952) – Gene Kelly and Stanley Donen’s tune-filled ode to early Hollywood and the birth of talkies.
THE ESSENTIALS – Hosted by Alec Baldwin and Robert Osborne – Saturdays at 8 p.m.
• June 4 – Dodsworth (1936) – part of a night focusing on marital drama.
• June 11 – The Caine Mutiny (1954) – first film during a night of movies about courts martial.
• June 18 – Bringing Up Baby (1938) – opening film on a night of classic screwball comedies.
• June 25 – Out of the Past (1947) – part of night dedicated to actress Jane Greer.