The Ottumwa Courier

Southeast Iowa

November 2, 2012

Centerville planning holiday film festival

CENTERVILLE — Appanoose County historians found something a bit surprising when they started digging into Centerville's film history: The town has never hosted a film festival.

That's about to change.

On Saturday, Nov. 17 the Appanoose County Historical Society will host the first Historic Holiday Film Festival at the newly renovated Majestic Theater.

The society plans to show old and rare Christmas films. Most of the films date to before 1940 and all are at least 50 years old. The very oldest will be a variety of silent Christmas films, which are a rare find and a rare treat to watch.

Some of these films were produced before 1910 by Thomas Edison’s production company. Several versions of Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol” will be shown, spread throughout the event. There will also be a great selection of very old Christmas cartoons, and some Christmas specials from old favorites: Our Gang (The Little Rascals), Abbot and Costello, Red Skelton, Jack Benny, George Burns and Gracie Allen,to name a few.

The old movies are intended to showcase the renovation of the Majestic Theater, which showed some of these same films when they were first released.

The festival will open at noon and run films continuously through 9 p.m. with some short intermissions to change the films, and for guests to stretch their legs. The admission cost is $5 and this will admit you for the whole day. Attendees will be able to come and go and come back again if you don’t want to stay for the whole event. Refreshments will be available for purchase.

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