July 13, 2012
“Williamsburg: The Story of a Patriot” to be Shown to Sold-out Audience During “The Last 70 mm Film Festival” in Beverly Hills, California
The longest continually running motion picture in American film history, “Williamsburg: The Story of a Patriot,” will be shown to a sold-out audience Monday, July 16 at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills, Calif.
The screening is part of “The Last 70 mm Film Festival” presented by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. “Williamsburg: The Story of a Patriot” is paired with the 1959 classic, “Sleeping Beauty.” Other classic films included in the festival are “Spartacus,” “It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World,” “The Sound of Music,” “Grand Prix” and “2001: A Space Odyssey.”
Colonial Williamsburg guests may view the digitally-restored “Williamsburg: The Story of a Patriot” 9:05 a.m. — 4:15 p.m. Saturday through Wednesday and 9:05 a.m. — 12:30 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays in the twin Patriot Theaters at the Colonial Williamsburg Regional Visitor Center. Admission is by Colonial Williamsburg ticket, Good Neighbor Pass or $3 fee.
“Williamsburg: The Story of a Patriot” is the film that has introduced Colonial Williamsburg guests to the issues and events on the eve of the American Revolution daily since its premier showing April 1, 1957. The 38-minute film, directed by Academy Award winner George Seaton, was produced by Paramount Pictures for The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation to illustrate the ideas and the ideals that gave birth to the American Revolution in 18th-century Williamsburg.
The modern classic was restored to its original grandeur under the guiding hand of Robert Harris of The Film Preserve, Ltd., a New York company specializing in the restoration of classic films, in concert with Eastman Kodak’s CineSite digital facility, Pacific Title/Mirage and Todd-AO.
The restored “Williamsburg: The Story of a Patriot,” with its vibrant color and stirring sound, is the 2004 result of several years of digitally rebuilding the film frame by frame – 60,000 in all – with the technological help of some very large computers, skilled technicians and extensive collaboration by Colonial Williamsburg staff and donors.
The film originally was shot in VistaVision — a unique large format system which maximized visual and sonic impact — which became known as Motion Picture High Fidelity. The pioneering movie technology included Todd-AO six-channel stereo in one of the first uses of “surround sound.” The twin Patriot Theaters, with stadium seating ahead of its time, are the only cinematic environments ever created for the exhibition of a VistaVision motion picture – a film, in turn, produced for use in those theaters alone. The 55-year run of “Williamsburg: The Story of a Patriot” is evidence of its enduring value to generations of Americans.
“Williamsburg: The Story of a Patriot” is available to own on DVD for $24.95 at Williamsburg Booksellers in the Regional Visitor Center, Everything Williamsburg in Merchants Square and online at http://www.williamsburgmarketplace.com. The DVD also contains “The Story of a Patriot Retold,” a 15-minute feature about the production and restoration of the 1957 film.
The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation is the not-for-profit educational and cultural organization dedicated to the preservation, interpretation and presentation of the restored 18th-century Revolutionary capital of Virginia. This town-sized living history museum tells the inspirational stories of our journey to become Americans through programs in The Revolutionary City and through the award-winning Revolutionary CityTM presentation. Explore The Art Museums of Colonial Williamsburg and discover the DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum featuring the best in British and American decorative arts from 1670 – 1830 and the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum home to the nation’s premier collection of American folk art, comprising more than 5,000 folk art objects made during the 18th, 19th, 20th and 21st centuries. Colonial Williamsburg Hotels feature conference spaces and recreation activities from spa and fine dining to world-class golf. Colonial Williamsburg is committed to expanding its thought-provoking programming through education outreach on-site and online. Purchase of Colonial Williamsburg products and services supports the preservation, research and educational programs of the Foundation. Philanthropic support by individuals, corporations, and foundations benefits the educational mission of The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation.
Williamsburg is located in Virginia’s Tidewater region, 20 minutes from Newport News, within an hour’s drive of Richmond and Norfolk, and 150 miles south of Washington, D.C. For more information about Colonial Williamsburg, call 1-800-HISTORY or visit Colonial Williamsburg’s website at www.history.org.