Tcm at the movies

Turner Classic Movies (TCM) has announced the 14 films that will be included in their 2019 Big Screen Classics series. TCM screens these films in movie theaters across the U.S.A., giving film lovers the chance to see classic films on the big screen as they were intended to be seen. Also included with each screening is commentary before and after the film from Ben Mankiewicz and other TCM hosts that provides context, insights, and other pertinent details about the film. All in all, it’s always a great time at the movie theater.

Here’s the lineup for 2019.

All images ©️ Turner Classic Movies.

The Wizard of Oz (1939) 80th Anniversary – January 27, 29, and 30, 2019

My Fair Lady (1964) – February 17 and 20, 2019

To Kill a Mockingbird (1962) – March 24 and 27, 2019

Ben-Hur (1959) 60th Anniversary – April 14 and 17, 2019

True Grit (1969) 50th Anniversary – May 5 and 8, 2019

Steel Magnolias (1989) 30th Anniversary – May 19, 21, and 22, 2019

Field of Dreams (1989) 30th Anniversary – June 16 and 18, 2019

Glory (1989) 30th Anniversary – July 21 and 24, 2019

Hello, Dolly! (1969) 50th Anniversary – August 11 and 14, 2019

Lawrence of Arabia (1962) – September 1 and 4, 2019

The Shawshank Redemption (1994) 25th Anniversary – September 22, 24, and 25, 2019

Alien (1979) 40th Anniversary – October 13, 15, and 16, 2019

The Godfather Part II (1974)- November 10, 12, and 13, 2019

When Harry Met Sally (1989) 30th Anniversary – December 1 and 3, 2019

For the latest scheduling information and to find a theater near you where these films are playing, visit the Fathom Events website.

Turner Classic Movies ‘Big Screen Classics’ 2020 Calendar Announced!

If you didn’t know already, Fathom Events and Turner Classic Movies are bringing back the biggest movies every year for audiences to enjoy in theaters as part of their Big Screen Classics program. This marks the fifth year that TCM has been offering this to moviegoers and the 2020 calendar is already looking quite impressive. Here are the movies and dates for 2020.

An American in Paris- January 19th & 22nd

Love Story- February 9th & 12th

The Color Purple- February 23rd

King Kong (1933)- March 15th

A League of Their Own- April 26th, 27th & 29th

Airplane!- May 17th & 20th

Annie (1982)- June 14th & 17th

The Blues Brothers- June 28 & July 1st

Ghost- July 19th & 22nd

Babe- August 9th and 12th

Close Encounters of the Third Kind- September 13th, 14th & 17th

Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho- October 11th & 12th

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest- November 8th & 9th

Fiddler on the Roof- December 13th & 14th

Tickets will go on sale as soon as the dates for these films get closer to their respective showtimes. 2019 offered us some great movies to relive on the big screen again, and 2020 is no exception this time around. Mark your calendars for some of the biggest movies to see again on the Big Screen, thanks to Turner Classic Movies and Fathom Events!

Fathom Events and Turner Classic Movies Reveal 14 Movie Masterpieces Returning to Cinemas For 2019 TCM Big Screen Classics Series

DENVER, Dec. 5, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — Film fans can take a yearlong journey through Hollywood history in 2019 when Fathom Events and Turner Classic Movies (TCM) come together for the fourth annual “TCM Big Screen Classics,” presenting 14 film favorites throughout the year, spanning seven decades.

From the Golden Age of Hollywood to groundbreaking movies from the seventies, eighties and nineties, the “TCM Big Screen Classics” series combines each film with little-known facts and insight provided by TCM Primetime Host Ben Mankiewicz. In addition, every film is presented in its original aspect ratio, offering audiences the chance to see these movies on the big screen just as they were originally enjoyed.

The lineup for the 2019 “TCM Big Screen Classics” includes:

“Every year, more and more film fans have flocked to the TCM Big Screen Classics series, proving the lasting appeal of these movies and the thrill of seeing them in a movie theater,” said Fathom Events Vice President of Studio Relations Tom Lucas. “From spectacular musicals and grand Westerns to epic adventures, we are tremendously proud of this year’s lineup and our continuing partnership with TCM.”

“This series brings film lovers of all ages together to experience the magic of the movies on the big screen and allows TCM to be the ultimate gathering point for fans of classic cinema,” said Genevieve McGillicuddy, Vice President of Enterprises and Strategic Partnerships, TCM. “Through our relationship with Fathom Events and each of our studio partners, we are able to continue our mission to share and celebrate the entire spectrum of film history with audiences everywhere.”

Tickets for all films in the 2019 “TCM Big Screen Classics” series can be purchased beginning Friday, December 7 online by visiting, or at participating theater box offices. A complete list of theater locations will be available December 7 on the Fathom Events website (theaters and participants are subject to change).

A detailed schedule for the 2019 “TCM Big Screen Classics” series includes:

The Wizard of Oz (1939) – 80th Anniversary from Warner Bros.

Sunday, January 27 – 2:00 and 5:00 p.m. local time
Tuesday, January 29 – 7:00 p.m. local time
Wednesday, January 30 – 7:00 p.m. local time

Journey over the rainbow and down the yellow brick road with Dorothy, the Scarecrow, the Tin Man, the Cowardly Lion … and Toto, too. One of the crowning achievements of classic Hollywood, The Wizard of Oz stands apart from almost any other movie for its black-and-white-to-color cinematography, its standout songs by Harold Arlen and E.Y. “Yip” Harburg (who won an Oscar® for “Over the Rainbow”), and for its perfect cast: Judy Garland, Frank Morgan, Ray Bolger, Jack Haley, Bert Lahr, Billie Burke, Margaret Hamilton, Charlie Grapewin, Clara Blandick and “The Munchkins.”

My Fair Lady (1964) – 55th Anniversary from CBS

Sunday, February 17 – 1:00 and 5:00 p.m. local time
Wednesday, February 20 – 3:00 and 7:00 p.m. local time

Audrey Hepburn is willful, self-aware and ultimately self-reliant Eliza Doolittle and Rex Harrison is Professor Henry Higgins in this splendid widescreen adaptation of the smash Broadway musical by Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe. My Fair Lady won the Academy Award® as Best Picture of 1964 and seven additional Oscars®, including Best Director (George Cukor), Best Actor (Harrison), and Best Art Direction. Based on George Bernard Shaw’s Pygmalion, My Fair Lady still dazzles thanks to indelible performances, gorgeous cinematography, and songs like “I Could Have Danced All Night,” “The Rain in Spain,” “On the Street Where You Live” and “I’ve Grown Accustomed to Her Face.”

To Kill a Mockingbird (1962) from Universal Pictures

Sunday, March 24 – 1:00 and 4:00 p.m. local time
Wednesday, March 27 – 12:00 and 7:00 p.m. local time

Based on Harper Lee’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, the spare and eloquent To Kill a Mockingbird captures a time, place and mood with astonishing precision. Its Oscar®-winning screenplay by Horton Foote and direction by Robert Mulligan led to enormous critical acclaim, and the luminous central performance by Gregory Peck led not only to the Academy Award® for Best Actor, but to Atticus Finch being named the single greatest hero of all time in the American Film Institute’s “100 Heroes & Villains” poll. To Kill a Mockingbird also launched the career of Robert Duvall, who plays “Boo” Radley in this evocative, nostalgic look at American ideals through the eyes of a child.

Ben-Hur (1959) – 60th Anniversary from Warner Bros.

Sunday, April 14 – 1:00 and 6:00 p.m. local time
Wednesday, April 17 – 1:00 and 6:00 p.m. local time

A monumental epic, Ben-Hur is very rarely experienced in the way it was intended, as a massive feat of motion-picture craftsmanship. The production encompassed 300 sets, nine sound stages, an eight-month production and thousands of actors, including more than 365 speaking parts. More than 1.1 million feet of film were shot, and the result was an unrivaled spectacle from director William Wyler. Starring Charlton Heston, Jack Hawkins, Haya Harareet and Stephen Boyd, Ben-Hur went on to become a film legend, with a box-office gross that would equal nearly $1 billion in today’s dollars, in addition to 11 Academy Awards® — a record-breaking feat no film would match for nearly 40 years.

True Grit (1969) – 50th Anniversary from Paramount Pictures

Sunday, May 5 – 1:00 and 4:00 p.m. local time
Wednesday, May 8 – 12:00 and 7:00 p.m. local time

The towering and eminently entertaining Western True Grit celebrates its 50th anniversary in 2019. Called “a masterpiece” and “one of the most delightful, joyous, scary movies of all time” by Roger Ebert, the film stars Hollywood legend John Wayne as the unforgettable U.S. Marshal Reuben J. “Rooster” Cogburn, a role that won him the Academy Award® for Best Actor in a Leading Role and his only Oscar® after 40 years on the big screen. Directed by Henry Hathaway, True Grit pays homage not only to the great Westerns that came before it, but also to Wayne’s larger-than-life film presence.

Steel Magnolias (1989) – 30th Anniversary from Sony Pictures Entertainment

Sunday, May 19 – 4:00 and 7:00 p.m. local time
Tuesday, May 21 – 7:00 p.m. local time
Wednesday, May 22 – 7:00 p.m. local time

Sally Field, Dolly Parton, Shirley MacLaine, Daryl Hannah, Olympia Dukakis and Julia Roberts star in this gem of a comedy that was not only a box-office hit, but helped rocket Roberts into the stratosphere of Hollywood super-stardom in just her third major role – for which she received her first Oscar® nomination. She plays one of the residents of a fictional Louisiana town, based on Natchitoches, the hometown of screenwriter Robert Harling who wrote the play on which the film is based. Directed by Herbert Ross and produced by Ray Stark, Steel Magnolias generates laughter and tears in equal amounts, celebrating the strength and bonds of unforgettable women who unite in the face of tragedy to provide unconditional love and support.

Field of Dreams (1989) – 30th Anniversary from Universal Pictures

Sunday, June 16 – 1:00 and 4:00 p.m. local time
Tuesday, June 18 – 4:00 and 7:00 p.m. local time

“If you build it, he will come,” a disembodied voice whispers to farmer Ray Kinsella (Kevin Costner) in this classic film fantasy. The meaning is unclear, and his wife (Amy Madigan) has doubts; but the words push Ray to make an extraordinary gamble before leading him on a journey that connects him with three unlikely allies: reclusive author Terence Mann (James Earl Jones), baseball player Archibald “Moonlight” Graham (Burt Lancaster, in his penultimate role) and notorious “Shoeless” Joe Jackson (Ray Liotta). Director Phil Alden Robinson’s film has become synonymous not only with baseball, but with the power of unwavering belief and long-sought forgiveness.

Glory (1989) – 30th Anniversary from Sony Pictures Entertainment

Sunday, July 21 – 1:00 and 4:00 p.m. local time
Wednesday, July 24 – 4:00 and 7:00 p.m. local time

Denzel Washington received his first Academy Award® — a Best Supporting Actor Oscar® — for his performance as Pvt. Trip, the intense and passionate former slave who is part of the 54th Regiment Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry, the first Union regiment of all-black soldiers. By law, the troops could be led only by a white man, and Robert Gould Shaw (Matthew Broderick) assumes command. Also starring Cary Elwes and Morgan Freeman, the spectacular heroism of the soldiers in the regiment is vividly captured by director Edward Zwick, from a screenplay by Kevin Jarre, and three decades after its release, Glory remains one of the most intelligent and gripping movies ever made about the American Civil War.

Hello, Dolly! (1969) – 50th Anniversary from Twentieth Century Fox

Sunday, August 11 – 1:00 and 4:00 p.m. local time
Wednesday, August 14 – 12:00 and 7:00 p.m. local time

After 50 years, it’s so nice to have Hello, Dolly! back where she belongs: on the big screen, in this spare-no-expense adaptation of the Broadway sensation. Barbra Streisand stars as matchmaker Dolly Levi as she attempts to find a wife for “half-a-millionaire” Horace Vandergelder (Walter Matthau). Director Gene Kelly transforms Hello, Dolly! from a Broadway comedy to a lavish motion picture that also stars Michael Crawford as Cornelius Hackl and features an appearance by music icon Louis Armstrong. Hello, Dolly! has found recent fame as the favorite movie of Wall-E in the Disney-Pixar film; now fans of all ages can enjoy it in all of its big-screen splendor.

Lawrence of Arabia (1962) from Sony Pictures Entertainment

Sunday, September 1 – 1:00 and 6:00 p.m. local time
Wednesday, September 4 – 1:00 and 6:00 p.m. local time

At once sophisticated and adventurous, literary and epic, and always strikingly visual, Lawrence of Arabia is a majestic accomplishment. It’s truly a film made to be seen on the big screen, with breathtaking cinematography by Freddie Young, set to a lush and inspiring musical score by Maurice Jarre. Peter O’Toole stars as T.E. Lawrence, the British soldier who unites the Arabic Empire to fight against the Turks. Alec Guinness, Anthony Quinn and Omar Sharif co-star – and yet it’s the vast, unforgiving expanse of the desert that steals the show, with its impossible landscapes and mysterious beauty. Lawrence of Arabia won seven Academy Awards®, including Best Picture and Best Director with screenplay by Robert Bolt and Michael Wilson, produced by Sam Spiegel and directed by David Lean.

The Shawshank Redemption (1994) – 25th Anniversary from Warner Bros.

Based on a short story by Stephen King, The Shawshank Redemption was well-received when it was released in 1994, but perhaps no one could have anticipated that the movie would become so beloved that it remains at the top of IMDB’s user-generated list of most popular movies ever made. Tim Robbins stars as Andy Dufresne, a banker sentenced to two consecutive life sentences for the murder of his wife, and Morgan Freeman plays prisoner Ellis “Red” Redding in the seven-time Oscar®-nominated film written and directed by Frank Darabont. Added in 2015 to the Library of Congress National Film Registry, it’s a movie with a rare power to move and inspire audiences.

Alien (1979) – 40th Anniversary from Twentieth Century Fox

Sunday, October 13 – 1:00 and 4:00 p.m. local time
Tuesday, October 15 – 7:00 p.m. local time
Wednesday, October 16 – 7:00 p.m. local time

In space, no one can hear you scream, but in the summer of 1979, everyone could hear audiences screaming as they experienced the terror of director Ridley Scott’s science-fiction/horror masterpiece. Working from a screenplay by Dan O’Bannon and a story by Dan O’Bannon and Ronald Shusett, Alien is a film dripping in dread. Sigourney Weaver, Tom Skerritt, Veronica Cartwright, Harry Dean Stanton, John Hurt, Ian Holm and Yaphet Kotto are the crew members of the Nostromo, which investigates a mysterious signal coming from an unknown planet. When they unwittingly take an alien creature aboard the ship, they have no idea just how terrifying – and deadly – the ordeal will be.

The Godfather Part II (1974) – 45th Anniversary from Paramount Pictures

Director Francis Ford Coppola’s brilliant follow up to The Godfather continues the saga of two generations of successive power within the Corleone family. Coppola tells two stories in Part II: the roots and rise of a young Don Vito, played with uncanny ability by Robert De Niro, and the ascension of Michael (Al Pacino) as the new Don. A movie of staggering magnitude and vision, The Godfather Part II received six Academy Awards®, including Best Picture, and is widely considered the best sequel ever made.

When Harry Met Sally… (1989) – 30th Anniversary from Warner Bros.

Sunday, December 1 – 4:00 and 7:00 p.m. local time
Tuesday December 3 – 4:00 and 7:00 p.m. local time

There are rom-coms… and then there’s When Harry Met Sally…. Though it was hardly the first film that brought together romantic opposites and let the sparks fly, director Rob Reiner’s charming comedy is something special. That’s in part because of the brilliant screenplay by Nora Ephron – but it’s also because of the winning chemistry between lead performers Meg Ryan and Billy Crystal, who become best friends when they drive from New York to Chicago and Harry claims that women and men can never be “just friends.” Over the years, Harry and Sally keep running into each other and claiming they are just friends… until a climactic New Year’s Eve party, which brings both the film and the 2019 TCM Big Screen Classics series to a memorable close.

For artwork/photos related to “TCM Big Screen Classics,” visit the Fathom Events .

About Fathom Events
Fathom Events is the leading event cinema distributor with theater locations in all top 100 DMAs® (Designated Market Areas) and ranks as one of the largest overall theater content distributors. Owned by AMC Entertainment Inc. (NYSE: AMC); Cinemark Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: CNK); and Regal, a subsidiary of the Cineworld Group (LSE: CINE.L), Fathom Events offers a variety of unique entertainment events in movie theaters such as live performances of the Metropolitan Opera, top Broadway stage productions, major sporting events, epic concerts, the yearlong TCM Big Screen Classics series, inspirational events and popular anime franchises. Fathom Events takes audiences behind the scenes for unique extras including audience Q&As, backstage footage and interviews with cast and crew, creating the ultimate VIP experience. Fathom Events’ live Digital Broadcast Network (“DBN”) is the largest cinema broadcast network in North America, bringing live and pre-recorded events to 975 locations and 1,578 screens in 181 DMAs. The company also provides corporations a compelling national footprint for hosting employee meetings, customer rewards events and new product launches. For more information, visit

About Turner Classic Movies (TCM)
Turner Classic Movies (TCM) is a two-time Peabody Award-winning network that presents great films, uncut and commercial-free, from the largest film libraries in the world highlighting the entire spectrum of film history. TCM features the insights from Primetime host Ben Mankiewicz along with hosts Alicia Malone and Dave Karger, plus interviews with a wide range of special guests and serves as the ultimate movie lover destination. Currently in its 24th year as a leading authority in classic film, TCM offers critically acclaimed series like The Essentials, along with annual programming events like 31 Days of Oscar® in February and Summer Under the Stars in August. TCM also directly connects with movie fans through events as the annual TCM Classic Film Festival in Hollywood, the TCM Big Screen Classics series in partnership with Fathom Events, as well as through the TCM Classic Film Tour in New York City and Los Angeles. In addition, TCM produces a wide range of media about classic film, including books and DVDs, and hosts a wealth of material online at and through the Watch TCM mobile app.

SOURCE Fathom Events

Related Links

48th TCM Kongress Rothenburg 2017


11th European School Leader Day. 10h00-13h00, 14h30-18h00.
This years topic is “Online learning in acupuncture courses: challenges and opportunities”
Moderation: Jasmine Uddin (UK), Caoimhe Mc Glinchey (IRL)
Speakers: Charlesworth, Karen (UK), Nodder, Jane (UK)
Location: Hotel Eisenhut, Room Taubertal.

4th WHO-Forum via WebEx. 13h00- 14h00 Update on ICD-11 TM Chapter development.
1. Feedback from the ICD Revision conference in Tokyo, Japan.
2. Present results from the international peer review process of the ICD-11 TM Chapter.
3. Pilot testing in Europe.
4. Report on the status of international field-testing activities in 2017.
Nenad Kostanjsek, Technical Officer, WHO. Stephane Espinosa, Consultant, WHO. John Hughes, Royal London Hospital for Integrated Medicine, London, UK.
Moderation: Jiri Bilek (CZ), Maria Jeskanen (FI), Gerd Ohmstede (D)
Location: Hotel Eisenhut, Room Winterbach.

ETCMA Herbal Strategy Group 9h00 – 12h30.
How can we make the herbs safer and more accepted?
Moderation: Caoimhe Mcglinchey (IRL), Charles Buck (UK), Gil Barzilay (IL), Gerd Ohmstede (D), Michael McCarthy(IRL)
Location: Hotel Eisenhut, Room Winterbach. Only by invitation.

Meeting for Cultural and scientific exchange with Asian delegations. 15h00 -18h30, Scientific and TCM political presentations.
Moderation: Wang Weixiang (NL), Johanna Biemans (NL), Gil Barzilay (IL).
Location: Hotel Eisenhut, Room Winterbach.

International Meeting for networking and exchange. 20h30
Location: Wildbad, Rokokosaal. For invited guests.


Plenary session 9h30 -12h30. Networking morning, meeting everybody, representative pics…

3rd TCM goes political! 15h00 – 18h00. A must for all ETCMA board members representing their associations in Rothenburg: TCM-political successes in European countries we can learn from.
From Portugal Ricardo Teixeira and from Switzerland Danilo Sofranac.
Announcement of UNESCO World Acupuncture Day, 2018, Paris, Dr. Denis Colin (F).
Moderation: Gerd Ohmstede (D), Johanna Biemans (NL).
Location: Eisenhut, room Winterbach.

Reception for ETCMA 18h00 – 20h30 For board members and association representatives. ETCMA member associations- EC members and invitees only. Snacks and drinks.
Gerd Ohmstede (D), Johanna Biemans (NL), Caoimhe Mcglinchey (IRL).
Location: Eisenhut, room Taubertal.

MAY 2017, FRIDAY, 26TH

12th TCM-Science Scientific Research Day. 9h00 – 18h00
The pearl of the congress.
Styles of Practice and Way of Knowing in East Asian Medicine.
Location: Wildbad, Großer Villensaal.
Moderation: Volker Scheid (UK), Wortman, Velia (D).
5th US/Ca/ETCMA TCM/OM Meeting 9h00 – 12h30.
Together we are stronger, what can we learn from each other? This year with representatives from New Zealand and Australia
Moderation: Charlie Buck (UK), John Scott (US), Gerd Ohmstede (D)
Location: Hotel Eisenhut , room Winterbach.
By invitation only. Observers possible.

5th Meeting of TCM congress chairpersons 14h00 – 17h00
Moderation: Assaf Mor (IL), Gerd Ohmstede (D). If you are interested, please contact: [email protected]
Location: Hotel Eisenhut, room Winterbach.

9th TCM Social Forum; Chinese Medicine Across Borders How to manage life as an acupuncturist in Nepal. 13h15-14h15
Location Wildbad – Topplersaal. Köhn-Pandey, Sylvia (D), Tamang, Anjali (NP)

Introducing the Northern College of Acupuncture’s Online only MSc in Advanced Oriental Medicine (research and practice) for Acupuncture and TCM Practitioners 13h15-14h15, With College Principal Richard Blackwell (UK)
Location: Wildbad – Rokokosaal


9th TCM Social Forum; Chinese Medicine Across Borders 13h15-14h15
Location: Wildbad – Rokokosaal
News on refugee relief with Chinese medicine – various players report on their work
Köhn-Pandey, Sylvia (D)

TCM’s Robert Osborne picks his favorite holiday films

“Hi, I’m Robert Osborne.”

If those words make you grin, then you’re like me – you can’t get enough of Turner Classic Movies.

Much as I love Mad Men and Game of Thrones, the reason for having cable is TCM and the great films they show 24 hours a day. And Robert Osborne, the host for most of these movies, is a face I’m used to seeing as he provides fascinating commentary on the history of these films.

Osborne’s been a great advocate for the all-time classics, unearthing buried gems, highlighting restorations, conversations on classics onThe Essentials, his books about the history of the Academy Awards and of course the TCM Classic Film Festival.

With the holiday season finally here, I decided to take advantage of my guest-week and do an interview with Osborne about some of his favorite Christmas movies. I got to learn some secrets about my favorite films – and discover some movies I’d never heard of before!

Robert, many of the classic stories have been filmed many times – do you have a favorite version of, say, A Christmas Carol? I’m fond of theanimated short by Richard Williams that Chuck Jones produced.

Well, I’m partial to the Alastair Sim one, Scrooge. It’s got a sense of that Dickens grittiness to it, unlike so many of the others. They often go for a candy-colored look, like that MGM one from 1938, which has that MGM gloss to it.

Though I actually would have liked to have seen the intended version of it – for years, the character actor Lionel Barrymore, Drew Barrymore’s grand-uncle, always played Scrooge on the radio. That was a yearly thing – in the days before television, people would gather around their radios and he would read A Christmas Carol.

So MGM decided they were going to make a movie version of A Christmas Carol with Lionel Barrymore – it was a natural! And they had sets built and a script ready and everything, and then Barrymore had a terrible accident and fell.

He was in a wheelchair, and couldn’t get around for a long time. It aggravated a problem he had from another fall, and it came to where he spent the rest of his life in a wheelchair, in films like Key Largo and Duel in the Sun.

He wasn’t able to do that movie, and the guy they got to replace him, Reginald Owen, did a wonderful job. But I would have loved to have seen Barrymore play Scrooge on screen – and I prefer the grittiness of the Alastair Sim one.

That’s what I like about the Richard Williams version – it’s very grounded in the poverty and squalor of Scrooge’s England, and includes some of the scenes involving the working class that are usually deleted in adaptations. It’s outright scary sometimes!

Yeah – a lot of the adaptations delete that material. The Disney version, Mickey’s Christmas Carol, Scrooge is just kind of a sourpuss. It gets so far away from Charles Dickens and the original setting and message of the story that it loses a lot of its impact.

That was actually the first version of the story I ever encountered – and Alan Young, who voiced Scrooge in that, went on to quite a career voicing the character in the series Duck Tales, still one of my favorites.

What are some other Christmas movies you love? Some of my favorites I first saw on TCM, including Christmas in Connecticut and The Man Who Came to Dinner…

Oh, Christmas in Connecticut is still great fun! It’s interesting, that was such an unimportant movie when it came out – because it came out in the summertime in most cities. Back then, they didn’t have wide roll-outs for movies like they do today, and because they didn’t have television for promotion, they had to get word-of-mouth going. So to get a film to the smaller towns, where theaters made a lot of their money, it took a lot of time.

In order to have Christmas in Connecticut be in as many theaters as possible by Christmas, they opened it in New York – I think it was in July or August, and it was not really a movie people wanted to see in July or August.

It’s so interesting now that it’s become such a favorite of the Christmas season. And now, we can appreciate people like Barbara Stanwyck and Sydney Greenstreet and the wonderful character actors in it. It has a particular place in our affection.

You know, Arnold Schwarzenegger directed a TV remake of it,and it’s just awful! Awful! And you realize, again, just how good the Barbara Stanwyck version is when you see it being massacred by someone else – you learn to appreciate it even more.

Isn’t that the case with so many remakes?

Yeah. A lot. And speaking of films that have been remade –another favorite of mine is The Shop Around the Corner (remade as You’ve Got Mail with Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks). An absolutely priceless movie.

The characters are wonderful – it’s strange seeing someone as American as Jimmy Stewart playing a guy working at a shop in Budapest, but you don’t really care, because it’s so charming. Margaret Sullivan is great in it, Frank Morgan is great in it, and it just has such a great charm and ambiance to it. I just think it’s so special.

I also love The Bishop’s Wife, which was of course remade with Denzel Washington and Whitney Houston. I think because of Cary Grant and Loretta Young and David Nevin and Monty Woolley and Gladys Cooper and Elsa Lanchester, it’s just a priceless movie.

Any other favorites, perhaps some that not as many people would know about?

There’s an excellent movie we have on TCM called It Happened on Fifth Avenue, which was originally going to be directed by Frank Capra … but just before he was going to start working on it, he came across this story called “The Greatest Gift.” And that turned into It’s a Wonderful Life.

Capra sold It Happened on Fifth Avenue to a director named Roy Del Ruth, and he made the film with the wonderful character actors like Don DeFore and Victor Moore. It’s about this homeless guy in New York, played by Moore, and he gets cold in the winter out on the street, so he comes up with this design for living where he breaks into the mansion of a rich man who has gone off to Florida for the winter, and he camps out in the house.

And being a good-hearted guy, he invites other homeless friends to live in the house with him, and he knows he needs to get out by spring, because that’s when the guy will be coming home from Florida … but the guy comes back early. And it’s all about the confusion that happens, and it’s really a very charming movie.

And very relevant today, I’d imagine.

Exactly. No doubt.

Capra was probably kicking himself for letting that one go, because It’s a Wonderful Life was a huge flop when it was first released, though it’s now his greatest legacy. (Note: And I forgot while doing this interview that the aforementioned Lionel Barrymore played Mr. Potter)


We’ve talked about some more comic Christmas films, but are there any more dramatic, tear-jerking ones you’d want to recommend?

We’re actually showing a lot of them this month on TCM and into December – movies with Christmas moments in them that are very touching, but aren’t necessarily about Christmas.

Since You Went Awayi s a wonderful movie that ends on Christmas Eve, and has that Christmas spirit to it. One we’re showing that we haven’t before is called I’ll Be Seeing You, with Ginger Rogers, Joseph Cotten and a grown-up Shirley Temple. There’s a movie with Barbara Stanwyck and Fred MacMurray called Remember the Night, which has a wonderful Christmas theme.

So there’s a lot of movies that aren’t all about Christmas, or where Christmas isn’t the focus, but have that spirit of Christmas in them. I love that sequence in Auntie Mame, where she’s in the department store, sewing at Macy’s, and she doesn’t know how to do anything but fill out a form as “cash on delivery!”

It’s a funny sequence, but it’s a big Christmas sequence inthat. So a lot of my favorite movies areones that aren’t about Christmas, but have Christmas in them.

I understand that –Connie Willis, one of my favorite authors, says that she considers the Katharine Hepburn version of Little Women a Christmas movie, because it opens on Christmas and has major sequences around that holiday.

That’s lovely too. That’s really lovely. And it’s by far better than the MGM one in color, which was done up like a candy box. It’s about a poor family with four girls while the father’s away in the Civil War, and the MGM version is so colorful and they have such pretty clothes, it was like they were the richest people in town! But the Katharine Hepburn version is lovely.

I think Elf isfunny, with Will Ferrell. That’s a great Christmas movie. I was greatly disappointed in Santa Claus: The Movie…

I was five when that came out, and I remember seeing commercials for it on TV and even at age five going, “This looks terrible.” Though John Lithgow’s great as the evil toy maker.

One last question, not really Christmas-related – are there any recent movies, something that’s been in theaters the last year or two, that you’ve particularly enjoyed? I’m just curious, given how much of your work involves older films.

One movie I think is just terrific is Bernie, with Jack Black and Shirley MacLaine. That was a great surprise to me – so witty, so entertaining, a true story, and I’m not a great Jack Black fan, but he’s great in it. I think it’s a gem.

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Thanks again to Robert Osborne – and be sure to see him regularly on TurnerClassic Movies!

So what are your favorite holiday films? Let us know in the comments!

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